Maryland Courts

Frequently Asked Questions - Juvenile

What happens if my child is arrested?
See information at http://www.djs.maryland.gov/faq.html#faq006.

What happens in Juvenile Court?
See the information brochures on the Maryland State Bar Association Inc. website. Additional information may be found on the Maryland State Judiciary's website and the Juvenile Courts website.

Can my juvenile case be expunged (deleted)?
Juvenile records may not be expunged. At the end of a juvenile case, upon request, the court may seal the juvenile court files. If a youth that was charged as an adult successfully seeks to have the case transferred to the juvenile courts, and the State's Attorney declines to file a delinquency petition, or a delinquency petition is filed but the court enters a finding of "No facts sustained," the records from the original adult court proceeding may be expunged. A person who wishes to have court records expunged must file a petition for expungement with the court.

Juvenile records maintained by the Department of Juvenile Services remain confidential under the Juvenile Causes Act, 3-828.

See more information at the Department of Juvenile Services website.

Can I obtain information about my Juvenile case?
Juvenile cases are confidential and information can only be provided to specific persons or agencies. Before providing any information regarding a juvenile case, proof of identification is required.

Can an Armed Forces recruiter have access to the information in a juvenile case?
Juvenile cases are confidential and a waiver must be signed by the juvenile in order to release any information to an Armed Forces Recruiter.

Will the Public Defender represent me in a Juvenile matter?
The Public Defender will represent the juvenile regardless of his/her parent's income. The Public Defender can be reached at 443-550-6800.

Who will hear my case?
In Calvert County, the Master for Domestic Relations/Juvenile Causes presides over delinquent cases. Child in Need of Assistance (CINA), Termination of Parental Rights, Juvenile Peace Orders, and Juvenile Adoption Matters are heard by a Judge.

How can I obtain a Peace Order against a Juvenile?
An intake officer for the Department of Juvenile Services receives requests from a person or an agency with knowledge of facts which may cause a juvenile to be subject to a peace order. The intake officer makes an inquiry, which may or may not include an interview with the child who is the subject of the complaint, and within 25 days of receiving the complaint makes a decision to either authorize the filing of a juvenile petition for delinquency, a Juvenile Peace Order Request or both, propose an informal adjustment of the matter, or refuse to file a petition or request in the matter.

If the complaint alleges an act that which would be a felony if committed by an adult or involves and handgun and the intake officer either proposes an informal adjustment or refuses authorization to file a petition or peace order request, the intake officer must forward the complaint to the State's Attorney for Calvert County for review. After a preliminary review, the State's Attorney, within 30 days of receipt, will decide to file a petition or peace order request, refer the complaint to DJS for informal disposition, or dismiss the complaint.

If the intake officer's inquiry or the State's Attorney review authorizes the filing of a Request for Juvenile Peace Order, a petition is prepared and sent to the Circuit Court for a hearing before a Judge. The Judge makes the decision on whether or not to grant a peace order against a juvenile.