The laws governing Juvenile cases are codified in the Juvenile Act found at 42 Pa.C.S. 6301 et seq. and are also found in the Appellate court decisions interpreting the act. Juvenile court has jurisdiction over offenders who are under the age of 18 at the time of the commission of an offense and also over offenders who are under the age of 21 but have committed a juvenile offense prior to age 18. Under certain circumstances some offenses are not dealt with in the Juvenile court but are sent directly to adult criminal court. These would include the crime of Murder or other crimes such as Rape if the juvenile was over the age of 15 at the time of commission and a weapon was used. Even in these “direct file” cases we routinely file motions to have the case transferred back to Juvenile Court when possible. Obviously, the penalties in Juvenile Court are much less severe than in the adult system. The emphasis in Juvenile court is vastly different than in adult court since the rehabilitation of the juvenile offender is given primary consideration rather than punishment. There is no such thing as a conviction in Juvenile Court. Juveniles are not convicted of crimes rather they are adjudicated delinquent. Notwithstanding this, Juveniles are afforded the same Constitutional Rights as adults however they are not afforded Jury Trials in Juvenile Court. Juvenile cases are presided over by a Judge only. The exception of course are those cases where the Juvenile is tried in adult criminal court. We at the Law Offices of Perry de Marco, Sr., have many years of experience in dealing with Juvenile cases. We recognize the importance of trying to help juvenile offenders get their lives straightened out while they have the chance to do so. If your child has been charged you owe it to him or her to have the most experienced lawyer in court.
Contact the Law Offices of Perry de Marco, Sr. Please keep in mind that we do not charge for the initial consultation.