How a Prior Criminal Record Hurts You in the Long RunApril 4, 2017
In today’s competitive market, getting into a college or professional school or finding a high-paying job in the greater Philadelphia area is harder now than ever. Since the Great Recession, this is true even for people with impeccable credentials. A criminal record (particularly a lengthy one) can significantly hinder a person’s educational and professional options.
If you have been charged with a crime in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, you need experienced legal representation by a criminal defense attorney early on in your case. An experienced Philadelphia criminal defense attorney may be able to help you formulate legal defenses, potentially resulting in dropped charges or a favorable plea deal. After a period of time, an experienced Philadelphia criminal defense attorney may also be able to assist you with petitioning the Court for a criminal records expungement.
Undergraduate and professional schools, such as law schools, business schools, and medical schools, have stringent admissions requirements. Not only must applicants have strong academic credentials and high test scores in order to be admitted, they must also typically undergo a criminal background check and/or a character and fitness review – all as part of the application process. When criminal record checks reveal a lengthy criminal history, applicants may be denied admission to the educational institution of their choice. In fact, some schools automatically deny admission if the applicant has any criminal record, whatsoever, no matter the charge or conviction.
With the popularity and easy accessibility of the internet, handheld mobile devices, and other forms of electronic communication, criminal background checks are extremely easy to perform, and criminal records are readily available to the general public online.
Nowadays, many employers will not even consider an applicant who has a criminal record on the books. Also, upon arrest, many individuals who are employed risk losing their jobs and/or their professional licenses, depending upon the nature and circumstances of the criminal charges.
After a period of time passes, an individual may petition a Pennsylvania court to have his or her criminal record expunged. Expungement decisions are based upon a variety of factors, the most important of which is the effect the expungement will have on the community-at-large. A Court’s decision about whether or not to grant a criminal records expungement usually depends upon the following factors:
- The amount of time that has passed since the arrest, charge, or conviction
- The nature of the crime that the person was charged with and/or convicted of
- Any danger to the community-at-large by granting the records expungement
Contact an Experienced Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Criminal Defense Attorney Today to Discuss Your Case
Any criminal record – no matter the charge – can have very serious, negative consequences on just about every aspect of a person’s life. An experienced Philadelphia, Pennsylvania criminal defense lawyer may be able to assist you with eliminating or reducing your charges or with petitioning the court for a criminal records expungement.
Philadelphia criminal defense attorney Brian J. Zeiger of The Zeiger Firm has the legal knowledge and expertise to represent you throughout your pending criminal case. You should feel free to contact him today at 215-546-0340, for a free consultation, or contact him online.