About Juvenile Court
The judges and staff of Fulton County Juvenile Court welcome you to its revised and expanded website. Juvenile Court serves the residents of Fulton County by hearing all cases involving allegations of dependencyof children under the age of 18, children in need of services under the age of 18, and delinquency and traffic violations concerning children under the age of 17. The court is organized by Title 15, Chapter 11 of the Official Code of Georgia. Fulton County Juvenile Court is the largest juvenile court in Georgia and amongst the largest in the Southeastern United States.
Fulton County Juvenile Court is located in the Judge Romae T. Powell Juvenile Justice Center at 395 Pryor St. SW, Atlanta, GA 30312. The court is open Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Parking is available in the lot located in front of the Juvenile Justice Center. The lot is accessible from Pryor Street Southwest, Fulton Street Southwest and Formwalt Street Southwest. The Juvenile Justice Center can also be reached by public transportation via MARTA Bus Route 49.
The Judge Romae T. Powell Juvenile Justice Center is a secure facility. All persons entering the building will be required to pass through a metal detector and have hand-carried objects scanned. Weapons of any kind, cameras and cell phones with cameras are not permitted into the building.
In keeping with its mission and mandates from both Fulton County and the State of Georgia, Fulton County Juvenile Court provides the following services:
- Appointment of Guardians
- Citizen Panel Review
- Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA)
- Children in Need of Services (CHINS) Proceedings
- Delinquency Proceedings
- Drug Testing
- Educational Advocacy Services
- Family Drug Court and Teen Drug Court Programs
- Guardian Ad Litem (GAL)
- Indigent Defense Services
- Juvenile Counseling
- Mediation Services
- Medical Care for Juveniles in Custody
- Mental Health Services
Fulton County Juvenile Court serves the residents of Fulton County by hearing all cases allegations of dependency of children under the age of 18, allegations of delinquency, unruly conduct and traffic violations involving children under the age of 17. The Court is organized under Title 15, Chapter 11 of the Official Code of Georgia.
Fulton County Juvenile Court’s budget is set each year by the Fulton County Board of Commissioners through the adoption of the fiscal year’s county-wide budget. The Court’s budget is used to fund the count’s operations and the delivery of services to juveniles, with the remainder being used to fund the salaries and benefits of court employees.
The operational budget of Juvenile Court in the 2014 fiscal year is $14,481,160. This is the same level of funding allocated to Juvenile Court for the 2013 fiscal year. Other sources of revenue for 2013 include $75,552 in court fines and fees, $5,084 in supervision fees and $12,897 in restitution fees. The Court also received financial assistance in the form of grants.
Juvenile Court has three primary organizational divisions which work in concert to serve the court's mission. They are as follows:
Juvenile Court Administration
The Administration Office of Fulton County Juvenile Court ensures the timely, proper and efficient management of the budget, personnel administration, procurement, fiscal management of grants, facility management and planning, electronic data and telecommunications systems development and maintenance. Administration also oversees intergovernmental and community relations and staff development for the entire Juvenile Court.
The mission of Fulton County Juvenile Court Administration is the proper, careful and judicious management and oversight of all Court functions in support of the Court’s primary mission.
The Administrative Office is led by Chief Administrative Officer Omotayo B. Alli and is overseen by Chief Presiding Judge Juliette W. Scales. The Administrative Office oversees the following departments:
- Accounting and Finance
- Accountability Courts
- Clerk of Court’s Office
- Human Resources
- Information Technology
- Probation Services
There are subdivisions of Juvenile Court Administration, they are as follows:
The Accountability Courts subdivision, under the guidance of Court Administration, implements established policies and protocols to support the operations of the Accountability Court programs as evidence based rehabilitative resource for supporting the mandated initiatives of Fulton County Juvenile Court. In addition, the coordinator and administrator of the Accountability Courts provides oversight of all program functions, including but not limited to: tracking and maintaining assigned budgets and established MOUs, maintaining files of referred youth, working with court partners and community volunteers to encourage participation, and identifying assessment tools for participants and providers, and ensuring proper outcomes for the Accountability Court programs.
The mission of the Fulton County Accountability Court initiative is to enhance public safety and strengthen the lives of court involved families by creating an environment whereby such court involved families with underlying drug, mental health and parenting issues can receive meaningful and relevant intervention.
Clerk of Court's Office
The Clerk’s Office is a multilevel organization that encompasses multiple units within Juvenile Court. They are:
- The Clerk’s Office maintains the official record of the Court and serves as a notary for the Court
- Customer Service Representatives provide essential and upfront service to Court customers and provides assistance to customers regarding Court operations
- The Case Management Unit assists the court by setting calendars, updating information through JCATS, certifying and filing documents, drafting and recording orders, notifying parties of court dates, managing judge’s schedules, recording cases, calling calendars, securing the presence of parties for court hearings and all other assigned duties.
The Mission of the Court Clerk’s Office is to accurately and proficiently maintain and keep the official records of the court, to assist the court in the processing and handling of cases that come through the court for consideration, and to ensure excellent customer service when dealing with interested parties that seek information and assistance regarding the records or other business of the court.
Court & Family Services
The Court & Family Services Division oversees the Child in Need of Services (CHINS) registry and the processing of CHINS cases, the Complaint Office, the Educational Advocate, the Intake Attorney, the Citizen Review Panel and the Mediation Program. Combined, the division provides and manages services to qualifying children and families in support of Juvenile Court’s mission. Sub-units within Court & Family Services are:
- The Complaint Office reviews, examines and processes complaints filed by the public against children and families, and when necessary, drafts legal documents to initiate case proceedings
- The Citizens’ Panel Review is responsible for reviewing cases of children in foster care to identity needed resources and linkages and make recommendations in Court.
- The Intake Unit reviews, examines, adjusts and processes cases that are filed in Court. Intake also makes referrals for assistance when necessary
- The Mediation Unit informally handles cases before the court as an alternative to the standard adjudication process
Juvenile Court Judiciary
The Fulton County Juvenile Court is comprised of three presiding judges, Chief Judge Juliette W. Scales, Judge Bradley J. Boyd and Judge Renata D. Turner, and four full-time associate judges. The Judiciary conducts all hearings which are mandated by law to determine the existence of probable cause, the necessity for detention, adjudication and disposition of delinquency, dependency, CHINS, and traffic offenses; grants legitimations, guardianships, record sealings, permission to marry, to join the military or to determine parental notification of a minor’s intention to seek an abortion; and judicial reviews of children who are placed in foster care. By special authorization of the Fulton County Superior Court, the Fulton County Juvenile Court also conducts adoptions for those cases where the termination of parental rights has occurred to expedite permanency for these children.
The Judiciary is overseen by Chief Judge Juliette W. Scales
Pursuant to O.C.G.A. 15-11-1, the purpose of the Juvenile Court is to secure for each child who comes within the jurisdiction of the juvenile court such care and guidance, preferably in his or her own home, as will secure such care and guidance , emotional, mental, and physical welfare as well as the safety of both the child and community. It is the intent of the General Assembly to promote a juvenile justice system that will protect the community, impose accountability for violations of law, provide treatment and rehabilitation, and equip juvenile offenders with the ability to live responsibly and productively. It is the intent of the General Assembly to preserve and strengthen family relationships, countenancing the removal of a child from his or her home only when state intervention is essential to protect such child and enable him or her to live in security and stability. In every proceeding, the Court seeks to guarantee due process of law, as required by the Constitutions of the United States and the State of Georgia, through which every child and his or her parent and all other interested parties are assured fair hearings at which legal rights are recognized and enforced. The paramount child welfare policy of this state is to determine and ensure the best interests of its children.
The Juvenile Probation Division is established primarily to provide maximum treatment, supervision monitoring and rehabilitative services for juvenile offenders who have been brought before the Court for committing delinquent acts in violations of State and/or Local laws and ordinances prior to their 17th birthday.
The Fulton County Juvenile Court Probation Division not only provides treatment, rehabilitation and supervision, but also strives to maximize public safety by holding offenders accountable for their behavior using the most current and progressive means possible. The division fulfills these goals by addressing multiple causal factors which contribute to wayward youthful behavior. By providing maximum community based supervision and through the utilization of services provided by outside counseling agencies and service providers, the division seeks to positively impact not only the child, but the parents, family and entire community. Our holistic approach to reducing delinquency focuses on, but is not limited to, educational advocacy, job and employment readiness, addressing mental health concerns and identifying mentors to model appropriate behavior for our children.
The F.C.J.C. Probation Division seeks to maximize community safety as it relates to delinquent juvenile behavior by providing optimal probation supervision and treatment services that address underlying delinquency causing factors.