How do I sign up for domestic violence counseling?

If you have already been sentenced, you should have been given a list of all the approved Batterer’s Intervention Program providers in San Mateo County.  You can call one of those programs of your choice to make an appointment or ask additional questions regarding counseling.

If you need a list of certified programs in San Mateo County, you can obtain a copy at our probation office located on the 5th floor of the Hall of Justice, or at our satellite offices in East Palo Alto and South San Francisco.

If you live in another county, you can contact the local probation department to find certified BIPs in your area and then enroll in the program of your choice.

Please ensure that you keep a copy of your enrollment for your records and to provide to the Court and/or your assigned DPO as your proof of enrollment.

What if I do not have the money to pay for Domestic Violence counseling?

It is your responsibility to attend and pay for classes. Please contact the program regarding a reduction on fees or tell the judge about your financial trouble at the next progress report.

Can I attend more than one session of domestic violence counseling per week and complete the program sooner?

No, the law states that you must attend for 52 weeks.

Where can I get a list of Domestic Violence Treatment programs within San Mateo County?

You may come to any of our Adult Probation offices to get a list of available treatment programs or you may download it from this site.

How do I find out who my DPO is?

Even though the court instructs you to contact the probation department within 3 days, it almost always takes more than 2-3 weeks for your case to be assigned to the probation officer who will be supervising your case. You must contact the probation office within three days to get the paperwork going. After about 3 weeks, if you have not heard from your probation officer, it is your responsibility to get in touch with him or her. If you call reception after this amount of time, they should be able to tell you who your supervising officer will be. There are exceptions, where there are problems with the paperwork that it may take longer for your case to be assigned.

When I have a no contact order, how do I get that changed to a no harassment order?

The judge is the only one who can change a no contact order to a no harassment order. In domestic violence cases, the judge will usually wait until the defendant has started domestic violence counseling and shown that they will abide by their conditions of probation, before he or she is willing to modify the no contact order. Then, there must, both the victim and the defendant must agree that they want the no contact order modified.

The best way for this to happen is for the victim to contact the supervising probation officer and to express their desire for the no contact order to be lifted. It is also helpful if the victim sends something in writing. It is then up to the probation officer to make a recommendation one way or the other.

What happens if it is the victim who contacts the defendant?

The victim cannot be in violation of the no contact order. Even if the victim contacts the defendant, the defendant is still required to have no contact with the victim and can be arrested and/or have their probation violated if they do not terminate a phone call or walk away.