Court Investigations Unit FAQs
Who is doing the investigation on my case?
The assigned Deputy Probation Officer to your case will contact you either by mail or telephone. You may also call our reception desk at (650) 363-4244 and someone will answer any other questions you may have.
Why am I being referred to the Probation Department's Adult Division, Investigation Services?
Most cases are referred to us because courts need more information in order to make appropriate decisions on each case.
How long will the investigation procedure take?
The investigation procedure normally takes 28 days, but the court can extend or shorten it.
Will my employer be notified?
It depends on your case. You may ask your probation officer once you get one assigned.
When will I find out who my assigned Deputy Probation Officer is?
If your case was referred to the Probation Department for a pre-sentence report, your assigned Deputy Probation Officer will contact you regarding an interview appointment and a probation application. If after sentencing, you are placed on supervised probation, a supervision Deputy Probation Officer will contact you to set up an appointment.
Is there a form or application to be filled out?
Yes, the form is called the San Mateo County Adult Probation Application For Probation. A Spanish version of the form is also available. After your Court appearance, it is highly recommended that you obtain this form to complete in anticipation of your interview with the probation officer. These forms are available at the Probation Office on the 5th floor of the Hall of Justice, or at our satellite probation offices in East Palo Alto and South San Francisco.
Is it necessary to fill out the entire application?
Yes, please fill out the entire application. By doing so, a better picture of your case can be presented to the judge, which can be an advantage.
How binding are plea bargain agreements negotiated by my attorney with the Court and the District Attorney's Office?
Plea negotiations are considered, but not binding. The Probation Department submits a recommendation to the Court for sentencing based upon various factors, including the law, severity of the offense, prior criminal history, acknowledgement of wrongdoing, remorse, attitude and cooperation, social history, public safety, etc. Please consult with your attorney if you have further questions regarding plea bargain agreements.
What do I need to bring in for my presentence investigation interview?
Please bring the following items to your presentence interview:
- Completed probation application
- Proof of residence
- Proof of employment/Verification of income or financial support
- Proof of medical or mental illness
- Valid driver's license or state identification card
- Two or three character reference letters
What is the difference between my Pretrial Deputy Probation Officer and my Investigation Deputy Probation Officer?
You report to your Pretrial Deputy Probation Officer while you are released on Supervised Own Recognizance and criminal proceedings are pending. You contact and report to your Investigation Deputy Probation Officer following a referral to the Probation Department for a presentence report. Your Investigation Deputy Probation Officer will interview you and prepare a presentence report for sentencing.
Does the Probation Department have a list of Bay Area Licensed Residential Treatment Programs?
Yes, a list of Bay Area Licensed Residential Treatment Program is available. Please check with your assigned Deputy Probation Officer for approved programs.