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What are the main features of the juvenile justice system?

On Behalf of | Mar 18, 2024 | Criminal Defense

The juvenile justice system operates with the primary goal of rehabilitating children in trouble with the law. It recognizes that children and adolescents who engage in criminal activity have great potential to change.

Adults raising such kids should explore how the law deals with problematic youth. A bit of knowledge can shed considerable light on their situation.

Focus on rehabilitation

One of the central aims of this parallel justice system is getting those going before a judge to see the error of their ways. This approach seeks to understand the underlying reasons for the offender’s behavior. Once that happens, the courts address the matter through education and counseling.

Differences from the adult criminal system

The juvenile system uses terms like “delinquent acts” rather than “crimes” and “adjudication” instead of “trial” to lessen the stigma. Legal proceedings are typically less formal. Also, records of juvenile offenses often remain confidential.

Diversion programs

Diversion programs aim to redirect youth away from destructive activities. By participating, they can avoid formal punishment and time in jail. Many times, authorities expunge their records.

Family involvement

Authorities recognize the importance of a supportive home environment. Thus, juvenile courts typically work with the families. Their participation helps solve personal issues that may be contributing to the delinquency.

Restorative justice

The concept of restorative justice is increasingly becoming part of the juvenile justice system. Its focus is repairing the dependent’s actions through reconciliation with those they hurt.

When a son or daughter faces legal consequences, parents want to do all they can to limit the fallout. Parents may lessen the repercussions and show how much they care by playing their part.