FAQ - Juvenile Services

Child Support

Q.
Do you mediate child support or property issues?

A. No.

Q.
If you can not help me with child support, who can?

A. Please call the Washington County District Attorney's Office at 503-846-8671.
See also:

Emancipation

Q.
What are the steps for emancipation of juveniles?

A. 1. The youth must be at least 16 years old and their parents or guardians must reside in this county.
2. The youth must complete an application for emancipation and pay an application fee to the State of Oregon clerk.
3. The youth must give the notarized application and receipt for the payment of the fee to the Juvenile Department clerk.
4. The clerk will set a date for a preliminary court hearing, usually within 10 days. A notice will be sent to the youth and parents.
5. At the preliminary hearing, a Judge will explain emancipation, answer questions, and set a final hearing.
6. At the final hearing, a Judge will expect the youth to provide a written budget, give testimony concerning the application, provide the parents an opportunity to testify, and make a final decision.
7. If the Court grants the emancipation, a driver’s identification card must be received within 48 hours.

Q.
What is emancipation?

A. Emancipation means that a 16 or 17 year old person can be given certain rights and responsibilities of an adult or 18 year old person. This decision must be made by a judge.

Gangs

Q.
What are some signs that my child may be involved in a gang?

A. Change in life long friends
Change in style of clothing
Negative contact with people or authority
Being secretive from family and friends
Lack of interest in family/sports/community activities
Fear of going to school or lack of interest in getting an education
Drug or alcohol use
Poor school performance

Q.
What if my child is the victim of gang intimidation?

A. Notify your local law enforcement agency or the Washington County Sherriff’s Office Interagency Gang Enforcement Team, or the Washington County Juvenile Department.

Important Numbers:

Non-emergency Line: 503-629-0111

Interagency Gang Enforcement Team: 503-846-2700

Washington County Juvenile Department: 503-846-8861

Q.
What should I do if I think my child is in a gang or about to join a gang?

A. Notify your local law enforcement agency or the Washington County Sherriff’s Office Interagency Gang Enforcement Team, or the Washington County Juvenile Department.

Important Numbers:

Non-emergency Line: 503-629-0111

Interagency Gang Enforcement Team: 503-846-2700

Washington County Juvenile Department: 503-846-8861

Q.
Why do kids join a gang?

A. Identity or recognition- Being part of a gang allows members to achieve a level of status they feel they cannot achieve outside the gang’s culture.
Protection- Kids join the gang because they live in a gang area and are subject to violence by rival gangs. Kids join in an attempt to obtain safety from this violence.
Fellowship and Brotherhood-The gang functions as an extension of, or substitute for the family and may provide companionship lacking in the home environment.
Intimidation- Some members may be forced into joining by peer groups. Intimidation techniques range from extorting lunch money to physical assault.

General Information

Q.
If my child doesn’t want to go to school, what I can I do?

A. After you have contacted the school to get assistance, you may then call and speak with an assessment counselor who may be able to give you recommendations or refer you to other resources.

You can find more information on the Truancy Court page.
See also:

Q.
My son/daughter was arrested and referred for the first time to the Juvenile Department, what happens next?

A. In most circumstances, you will receive a letter scheduling you and your son/daughter for an appointment with an assessment counselor. The assessment counselor will gather information and make a determination of whether or not the case can be resolved informally or if it requires Court action.

Q.
What criteria must be met to detain a juvenile?

A. 1. A youth may be detained before adjudication, if one or more of the following conditions exist:
A. Fugitive - the youth is a fugitive from another jurisdiction, and/or an out of state runaway.
B. Serious crimes - The youth is alleged to have committed a crime involving:
1) Physical injury to another person
2) Disorderly conduct in the first degree
3) A felony
C. Failure to appear - The youth previously failed to appear, despite proper summons, citation, or subpoena.
D. Probation violation - The youth is on probation for a criminal offense and is alleged to have violated a condition of probation.
E. Conditional release - The youth is on conditional release for a criminal offense and has violated a condition.
F. Firearm/Destructive Device - The youth is alleged to be in possession of a fire arm (ORS 166.250). When probable cause exists that a youth was in possession of a firearm or destructive device (ORS 419c.100) while in or on a public building or court facility within the last 120 days, the youth must be detained for a hearing in front of the court.
G. Protection of the victim - The youth is required to be held in detention for the reasonable protection of the victim.

AND

2. (a) No less restrictive means can reasonably ensure appearance,

OR

(b) Youth's behavior endangers self, others, or the community.

Q.
What is a Citizen Participation Organization?

A. It is a Citizen Participation Organization - a place where you can discuss issues in a comfortable forum; meet neighbors who are interested in the community; get unbiased information; and find neighbors who will listen to your concerns and work with you to find solutions. All residents and business owners in Washington County cities and unincorporated areas are welcome and encouraged to participate.
See also:

Q.
What is the job of the Juvenile Counselor?

A. The responsibilities of the Juvenile Counselor are to supervise the youth, make sure that the conditions of probation are met, and provide services to reduce the chances that the youth will commit another offense. Since strong families, good school performance, and constructive activities with positive friends provide the best chances of avoiding criminal behavior, Juvenile Counselors work to build success in these areas.

Q.
What projects have received funding through the County's Community Development Block Grant Program?

A. Quite a number of jurisdictions have received the grant. View the resource below for the full list.
See also:

Q.
What time is curfew for youth in Washington County?

A. Please see the Washington County curfew calendar.
See also:

Q.
What trainings does the Juvenile Department offer?

A. Please check our "Presentations" and "Trainings" pages for a list of upcoming trainings.
See also:

Graffiti

Q.
What is graffiti?

A. It is one possible indication of gang activity in your area. Through graffiti, gangs are giving notice of their presence and activity. Graffiti is how gangs communicate and tell others that the area is visited by a particular gang.

Q.
What should I do if I see graffiti?

A. Notify your local law enforcement agency so that they can take a report and photograph the graffiti. This enables law enforcement to monitor gang graffiti.

Mediation

Q.
Can you train me to be a mediator?

A. No, we do not do mediation training. You might try contacting Oregon Mediation Association at 503-294-1017 or Oregon Dispute Resolution Commission at 503-378-2877.

Q.
Do you do voluntary mediation?

A. Voluntary Mediation is provided to couples seeking to resolve issues about their marriage or mediate conflict about parenting time or custody of children. The service is open to Washington County residents experiencing crisis in marriage, divorce, or post-divorce situation. Parents of minor children who are having difficulty making a workable parenting plan, or who are in conflict about some aspect of co-parenting and have not filed an action regarding their dispute, are eligible for voluntary mediation. (ORS 107.510 through 107.615)

Q.
Does Washington County require parenting programs for parents?

A. Yes. If you or the other party has filed an annulment, dissolution of marriage, legal separation, petitions to establish or modify custody or parenting time or a Filiation proceeding, AND if you have a child under the age of eighteen (18) you shall attend the family law education program.

All parties shall complete the Family Law Education Program offered by the court-designated providers or a pre-approved alternate education program. Parties shall register for the program or make application to the court for approval of a comparable alternate program within 15 days of receiving notice of this education requirement. Washington County is now using the Kid's Turn education program which also includes the children, and they may be contacted for registration, or site information by calling (503) 846-0665. You may also contact Conciliation Services at (503) 846-3428 if you have problems contacting the Kid's Turn program.

Q.
How can I get my spouse to come in?

A. Conciliation Services will see either couples or individuals for counseling services, but only couples are seen for mediation. Services are usually more effective when both parties will participate voluntarily.

Q.
Is there a fee for the service?

A. Fees on applications for marriage licenses and petitions for marriage dissolution support our services. People are not charged for counseling or mediation services, however there is a fee for custody studies.

Q.
My spouse and I have a restraining order. Do we still have to mediate? Can we still mediate?

A. Mediation is an order of the court and restraining orders are also orders of the court. Both must be obeyed. The fact that there is a restraining order does not mean that you will be unable to reach some agreement. Every effort will be made to insure the safety of all mediation participants. If you have specific questions about your own situation, your lawyer can best answer them. If you do not have a lawyer, our office can answer questions about our procedures, but we can not offer legal advice.

Q.
What happens if we are ordered into mediation?

A. Mediation requires but is not limited to an orientation session and one session with the mediator. The orientation is a group session that includes an introduction by a Judge, videotape on the goals of mediation, a presentation of mediation rules, and a question and answer period. (ORS 107.179, 107.755 through 107.795)

Q.
What if the other parent will not agree to come in?

A. Parents in conflict over custody or parenting time with children, who have filed a court action regarding their dispute, will be ordered by the Court to participate in mandated mediation. A mediation packet is available at the circuit court clerks office, or you may review one here. By negotiating an agreement, parents gain control over restructuring the family. After resolving conflicts, the parties confer with their attorneys and the agreement reached becomes part of the final decree. In the event of future disputes, parents may return to mediation.

Q.
What is Conciliation Services? What do you do?

A. Conciliation Services began in 1975 to assist people considering the dissolution of their marriage and provide custody studies to the Court. In 1984 the legislature authorized the Court to provide mediation services to assist couples in reaching agreement about custody and parenting time before a court hearing. The goal is to encourage a sense of responsibility in the couple for making decisions, while saving court time and expense.

Q.
What is mediation?

A. Mediation is a cooperative problem-solving process in which a neutral professional assists the parties to define the issues in the dispute; and to make agreements that are in the best interest of the children. The disputing individuals meet together with a mediator who is trained to help parties solve problems in a cooperative manner. The mediator does not take sides or make decisions for the parents but helps them to communicate and to explore alternative solutions. The mediator may offer suggestions and help parents develop options to resolve the issues, but the final agreement is up to the parties.

Probation and Parole

Q.
How long does probation last?

A. Probation is usually imposed by a judge without a definite time for it to end -- the reason for this is to place responsibility on the youth. Six months to two years is a common period of probation. The length of time depends on the nature of the offense, the need for supervision, and the youth’s progress in complying with conditions and meeting goals.

Q.
What are typical conditions of probation?

A. The goals are to prevent new offenses; restore victims and the community; and build success of youth in their family, school, and circle of friends. The conditions of probation are designed to help achieve those goals and often include:

*Avoiding further violations of the law
*Avoiding alcohol and drugs
*Restitution to victims
*Community service work
*Attending school and performing well
*Reporting regularly to the probation counselor
*Learning new skills that make future crime less likely

Records

Q.
Can I access the police report?

A. No. The Juvenile Department is not allowed to give out the police report under any circumstances. You may want to call the referring police agency for information regarding obtaining the report.

Q.
Is the military able to access my records?

A. The Juvenile Department releases information on juveniles to the United States military in accord with Oregon law. The following may be released on juveniles supervised under a Formal Accountability Agreement or adjudicated delinquent by the Court:

Offenses that are the basis of jurisdiction;
Dispositions such as formal accountability agreement, probation,
Commitment to the Oregon Youth Authority;
Dates of dispositions and of dismissal.

Q.
What does the law say about juvenile records?

A. The clerk of Court keeps records of all proceedings in Juvenile Court. Inspection of those records is limited by law to certain parties. Records relating to the youth's history and prognosis are confidential unless released with the youth's or parent’s permission or allowed by the judge.

Q.
What is expunction?

A. Expunction is the formal Court process for the destruction of a juvenile's records.

Q.
What is the law on how juveniles can have their records destroyed?

A. Juveniles who have records with the Juvenile Department may apply for expunction of their records by completing an Application for Expunction. The following conditions must be met:

(1) At least five years have passed since the date of the termination (dismissal) of your most recent juvenile court case; and since the date of your most recent termination, you have not been convicted of a felony or a Class A misdemeanor; and no proceedings seeking a criminal conviction or an adjudication in a juvenile court are pending against you; and you are not within the jurisdiction of the court for any delinquent act or certain types of dependency petitions; and the Juvenile Department is not aware of any pending investigation of you by any law enforcement agency;

OR

(2) The person is at least 18 years old and has never been found within the jurisdiction of the Court;

OR

(3) If neither of the above conditions have been met, the Juvenile Court has authority to have a record expunged, if it finds it to be in the best interest of the person and the public.

Oregon law provides for certain records to be destroyed. See Oregon Revised Statute Chapter 419A for the complete statute that governs expunction of a juvenile record. You may obtain an application for expunction from the Juvenile Department (222 N. First Ave. Hillsboro, OR 97124)

Victims' Services

Q.
How can I find out about a case I am involved in?

A. Contact the Victim Services Program at (503) 846-3784. To assist the advocate in finding information about your case it is helpful to know the following: offender’s name; police agency and/or police report number; type of offense and the date it occurred. You will be given an update on your case (if it has arrived at the Juvenile Department) and hearing notification (if one has been scheduled). You may also request information about counseling or other victim support services. In most circumstances, you should be able to know the general plan for your case within two to four weeks after it is received by the Juvenile Department. The Juvenile Court process is not secret. It is open to the public, and the involvement and participation of victims is especially encouraged.

Q.
How can I request that my address not be given to the offender?

A. Victims' addresses and phone numbers are witheld from the youth offender automatically.

Q.
How do I get my property returned if it has been recovered by the police?

A. Recovered property may be needed as evidence if the case goes to trial. For this reason, the police will not ordinarily release your property back to you until the District Attorney's Office (Juvenile Division) advises them in writing that it is no longer needed. Sometimes it is possible to photograph urgently needed property and then release it before trial - contact the Deputy District Attorney assigned to the Juvenile Department at (503) 846-8861.

Q.
What if I am harassed by the juvenile offender while my case is pending?

A. Call the police and report the harassment. Then call the Juvenile Department and report it to the counselor handling your case or to Victim Services at (503) 846-3784.

Q.
What if the juvenile offender's attorney or investigator wants to talk to me?

A. The juvenile's legal representative is permitted to talk with you if you agree. You may refuse to speak to an attorney or private investigator for the alleged youth offender. If you decide that you would like to speak with the juvenile’s attorney or private investigator, you may request to have a Deputy District Attorney present.