Skeletons In Your Closet: How To Clean Up Your Criminal Record To Minimize The Consequences Of An Imperfect Past.

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The economy is tough. If you are looking for work or trying to advance your career, you have to be as competitive as you can and more qualified than the next applicant You can’t afford to give a potential employer any excuse not to hire you. That means no black marks, no skeletons in your closet, no reason for an employer to send you the generic “we found a more qualified candidate” letter. So what happens if your past isn’t completely unblemished? Specifically, what happens if you have an arrest or conviction in your past, even if it’s the very distant past? Do you have to disclose it to your future employer?

The answer is: It depends. It’s no surprise that laws in this area are complex and confusing. Your obligation to disclose a conviction will likely depend on the nature of the offense, how long ago it happened, the type of job you are applying for and whether you’ve taken any steps to “expunge” the conviction in the courts.

The good news is that there may be some legal steps you can take to minimize the consequences of your criminal past. Our attorneys know the laws. We know what an applicant must disclose and what an employer is prohibited from asking. We work with clients to mitigate or remove barriers to employment that result from a criminal conviction.

In this Internet age, where the most private information is available at the click of a mouse, it is no longer enough to sit back and hope a potential employer won’t find out. It is estimated that 80 percent of large employers now conduct criminal background checks using fee-based commercial companies. These reports can be inaccurate, incomplete and misleading. Thus, it is more imperative than ever to find out what’s on your criminal record and how to clean it up. Contact our office today to see how we can help.

We assist clients with the following:

  • Petitions to retroactively set aside the convictions, commonly referred to as “expungement.” (Penal Code section 1203.4);
  • Petitions for early termination of probation (Penal Code § 1203.3);
  • Motions to reduce a felony conviction to a misdemeanors(Penal Code § 17, subd. (b));
  • Petitions for findings of factual innocence (Penal Code § 851.8);
  • Juvenile record sealing (Welf. & Inst. Code § 781);
  • Certifications For Rehabilitation and pardons (Penal Code § 4852, et. seq.);
  • Internet Exclusion and other mitigation for certain 290 registrants (See 290.46, et seq.);
  • Motions to vacate an unlawful plea, post-conviction writs and appeals.

Offering clients the experience and diversity of a larger firm while retaining the approachability, efficiency and personal attention of a smaller practice.