A Juvenile Charged as an Adult in New Jersey 

Juvenile Crimes Defense Lawyers in Oakland, New Jersey

Travis J. Tormey is an experienced criminal defense and drunk driving (DWI) attorney who represents clients charged with various juvenile offenses throughout Bergen County, including in Oakland, Park Ridge, and Ramsey. Mr. Tormey has handled thousands of criminal cases in his years of practice, making many appearances in Superior Court (felonies) and Municipal Courts (misdemeanors). In New Jersey, juvenile offenses are handled in Superior Court by the county prosecutor’s office. Over the years, Mr. Tormey has represented countless juvenile clients in criminal cases, including mutual fighting, trespassing, and shoplifting. He will use this invaluable experience as well as his long-standing relationships with local prosecutors and judges to get the best possible result in your case. Contact his office anytime at (201)-330-4979 for a free consultation.

“When my son was arrested for distribution of marijuana and MDMA, our world was a nightmare and we were scared. When we met Travis he reassured us that my son would be okay. When it came time for court we thought that our son was going to be on probation, or even worse, however, Travis was able to get my sons case dismissed. “Exactly what we wanted!” Thank you Travis for all your help. I would highly recommend the Tormey law firm they were excellent!”

– Former client’s mother 

A Juvenile Charged as an Adult Offender in New Jersey

The first and most important thing to remember in juvenile cases, as opposed to adult cases, is that the standard is different. The standard in adult court is focused on punishment and deterrence. By contrast, in juvenile court, the focus is on rehabilitation and the standard is the “best interests of the child.” As a result, it is imperative that a juvenile case remains in family court as opposed to going to adult criminal court. In some cases, the county prosecutor’s office will attempt to have the juvenile’s charges waived up to adult court. Typically, this happens when the charges are very serious, such as attempted murder, robbery, carjacking, kidnapping, or aggravated assault. When deciding whether to waive the juvenile charges to adult court, the judge will consider the nature of the charges, the juvenile’s prior history (if any), and the age of the juvenile. If the juvenile has a lengthy prior criminal history, the prosecutor will probably argue that the rehabilitation focus of juvenile court has not succeeded and that the juvenile needs to be subject to punishment in order to protect the public. Also, the older the juvenile, the more likely the waiver up to adult court.

If the case is waived up to adult court, the juvenile will be treated like an adult defendant. He or she will be facing far more serious penalties, including a lengthy period of incarceration in an adult prison. As such, it is imperative that the juvenile’s case remains in family court and is not transferred to adult criminal court.

At a waiver hearing to determine whether a juvenile should be waived up to adult criminal court, the judge will consider the following:

  • The nature of the offense charged
  • The age of the juvenile
  • The juvenile’s prior history (if any)
  • The juvenile prior response to rehabilitation (if any)
  • The juvenile’s potential response to rehabilitation
  • The juvenile court’s ability to impose an appropriate punishment
  • The danger to the public


Morristown NJ Juvenile Success Story 

Recently, Mr. Tormey handled a juvenile marijuana possession case in Morristown, New Jersey. As a result of Mr. Tormey’s efforts, the Family Intake division diverted the case to a probation officer, who allowed the juvenile to complete community service and held the charges in abeyance (pending) for 90 days. The juvenile defendant completed community service and remained arrest-free during this probationary period. As a result, the charges were ultimately dismissed. Click here to read more of our many victories in court.


Call the Tormey Law Firm in Hackensack, NJ Today for a Free Consultation

For additional information and a free consultation, please contact us anytime at (201)-330-4979, or use our online contact form. Our Hackensack office is conveniently located in the heart of Bergen County, just steps from the Hackensack Municipal Court and Bergen County Superior Court. One of our criminal defense attorneys will be happy to discuss your case over the phone or to schedule an appointment to meet with you in person.


If you’ve been charged with a criminal offense, disorderly persons offense, or traffic / DWI violation, you have the right to an attorney who will defend you against your charges and fight for your best interests. To learn more about how your attorney can fight to have your charges dismissed or reduced, click a link below to see our video library of legal defenses and strategies.