Those convicted of a sex crime may feel trapped, even after serving their sentence and being released. This is often attributed to Megan’s Law, which requires those convicted of a sex crime to put their name on a registry that is available to the public. This registry often surfaces upon an employment background check. This can make it more difficult for an individual to get their life back on track after their conviction.
What Is Megan’s Law?
Megan’s Law was initiated after a young girl named Megan was raped and killed by a sexual offender that had two prior convictions. According to Megan’s parents, they believed that the knowledge of a sexual offender living on their street would have prevented them from letting their daughter roam the community freely. This led to the initiation of Megan’s Law; a law that forces sexual offenders be listed on a registry. If the individual is on the highest tier, the registry includes vital information about the sexual offender, including their name, date of birth, address, job location, height, weight, and hair color.
Being on the Sexual Offender Registry
Once an individual’s name is on the sexual offender registry, it often has an impact on their life; this includes restrictions on living in certain areas, like near schools. It can also affect an individual’s ability to find employment. For example, a person convicted of a sexual offense is unable to work with or around children. Also, different organizations and communities are notified if a sexual convict resides nearby.
Some individuals will have Parole Supervision for Life (PSL), depending on their sexual offense. Being subjected to PSL leads to even more restrictions. Some of these restrictions include restrictions on moving out of the state and restrictions on education. Sexual convicts subjected to PSL will also have to keep in contact with a parole officer, which can be difficult for an individual to deal with, especially after fulfilling their sentence. Therefore, it is crucial to contact an experienced lawyer to find out how to lessen the impact of Megan’s Law on one’s everyday life.
An individual is subjected to comply with Megan’s Law when convicted of:
- Aggravated sexual assault
- Sexual assault
- Endangering the welfare of a child
- Aggravated criminal sexual contact
- Knowingly promoting child prostitution
- Owning or distributing child pornography
What Are the Tiers in Megan’s Law?
The law does not treat all sexual offenders the same, and sets forth three tiers based on the severity of the offense. Similar to PSL status, the tier is dependent on the offense committed and the likelihood of a person repeating the offense. Each tier has its own rules regarding notifying the community.
In the first tier, only the police are notified. In the second tier, the police and schools in the community are notified. Finally, in the third tier, the police, schools, and the community are notified. In order for a person to change the tier to which they are classified, the assistance of the right lawyer is critical.
Megan’s Law Does Not Restrict Certain Rights
It is important for individuals to note that despite a sexual offense, those convicted still have the right to certain things in society. Some of these things include applying for a loan, credit, health insurance, insurance, employee benefits, and housing.
Can I Ever Be Removed from the Sexual Offender Registry?
An individual can be removed from the Megan’s Law registry 15 years following their conviction, or if the individual is released from a correctional facility. In order to be removed, the sexual convict must not have committed any other offenses. Similarly, they should not be a threat to society. However, it is important to avoid being added to the Megan’s Law registry from the onset of the case; therefore, it is important to contact a skilled criminal defense lawyer for legal counsel immediately.
South Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyers at Aita Law, LLC Help Clients Subjected to Megan’s Law
If you are dealing with the negative effects of Megan’s Law, contact one of our South Jersey criminal defense lawyers at Aita Law, LLC immediately. Our lawyers help clients reduce their tier on the sexual offender’s registry, thus helping them live a more normal life after their sentence. If you are interested in consulting with a member of our legal team, contact us online or call us at 856-287-7800 for a free consultation. With offices located in Haddonfield and Marlton, New Jersey, we proudly serve clients in Cherry Hill, Camden County, and throughout South Jersey.
KENNETH D. AITA, ESQUIRE
Mr. Aita has successfully defended thousands of criminal cases. When you or a loved one is charged with a crime, it is an extremely daunting and frightening time. Criminal charges and convictions can have devastating effects on your life. You can be fired from your job, you can hurt your ability to get employment in the future, and most importantly could lose your precious freedom. Mr. Aita not only has the experience and expertise to represent you, but the compassion and understanding to help you through this difficult and confusing process. In a criminal case, everyone is against you; the police, the judge, and certainly the prosecutor, whose job is to get convictions. Mr. Aita is not only your skilled legal advocate, but is in your corner to protect you against the vast government resources that are against you. Make no mistake, fighting a criminal case is a war. You need an attorney willing to go to battle. Mr. Aita is in the trenches every single day tirelessly fighting for justice for his clients.