Juvenile Justice Definitions


The responsibility the juvenile has for repairing the harm caused by the crime they committed.

Adjudication of Delinquency

The formal verdict by the Juvenile Court Judge that says the juvenile is in need of treatment, supervision, and rehabilitation. This is comparable to a finding of guilt in an Adult Court.

Case Plan

This is a blueprint for the juvenile while under the Court's supervision. This includes individualized strategies and interventions that are outlined to address specific risk factors through risk assessment tools.   

Community Based

Services or counseling that juveniles can complete while still living with their parent/guardian in the community.

Community Service

Work completed by juveniles without pay that contribute positively to the community. 

Delinquent Act

A crime committed by a juvenile ages 10-17 which gives the juvenile court jurisdiction over the alleged act. This is comparable to criminal charges in an Adult Court.


A temporary holding facility for juveniles while they await a hearing for a Delinquent Act or a Violation of Probation.


A final determination made by the court after an adjudication of delinquency or any determination that ceases juvenile court action on a case. Below is a list of possible dispositions

Allegation withdrawn- Requires that a petition be filed and a court order which dismisses the allegation. 

Allegation dismissed- Does not require that a petition be filed and does not require a court order.

Youth Aid Panel- A decision is made to divert an allegation at intake for community intervention by placing the juvenile into the Youth Aid Panel Program. All referrals will be reviewed and approved by the Juvenile Probation Department Supervisor. A period of Youth Aid Panel involvement is 3-6 months.

Referral to another agency- A decision is made to refer a case at intake to another social service agency, which will be approved by a Juvenile Probation Department Supervisor. 

Informal Adjustment- A period of informal supervision for 6-9 months which does not require a court hearing. The juvenile and their parent/guardian must agree to accept the probation without a hearing. The juvenile may be referred for community based treatment and counseling under the terms of the informal adjustment. 

Consent Decree- Requires that a petition be filed and a court appearance which places the juvenile on a period of supervision for 6 months which may be extended up to 12 months by order of the court. Under the terms of the consent decree, the juvenile is eligible for all community-based treatment programs. A juvenile who successfully completes a consent decree will have no record of an adjudication of delinquency. 

Formal Probation- Requires the filing of a petition and a court order at which time the court finds the juvenile to be in need of treatment, supervision, and rehabilitation and places the juvenile on probation for a period of 1 year.

Placement- Requires the filing of a petition and a court appearance in which the court finds the juvenile to be in need of treatment, supervision, and rehabilitation and commits the juvenile to an appropriate facility.

Expungement- The removal of a juvenile's criminal and court record.

Intake Investigation/Social History

Gathering of information on the juvenile by a probation officer to allow for appropriate recommendations to the Judge. This will include family history, school records, prior criminal history, mental health diagnoses, and/or any drug and alcohol use.


Youth between the ages of 10 and 18. 


Juveniles who require intensive supervision and/or more concentrated therapeutic services can be Court Ordered to be removed from their home and placed into an Out-of-Home Placement to assist in meeting their needs.


Money owed to a victim due to the damage caused by a criminal offense.

Violation of Probation

Actions of a juvenile under supervision of the Court that negatively impact progress.  This could include a positive drug test, breaking curfew, not attending counseling, etc. 

YLS Assessment

A risk assessment tool that allows probation officers to determine the level of risk a juvenile presents to re-offend as well as identifying potential risk factors, or areas of need, that can be used to help juveniles improve behavior.