Whether the court finds you guilty of an offence or you decide to plead guilty to the charge against you, be aware that the consequences aren’t limited to the short or medium term; they can be for life. Indeed, as soon as an individual is found guilty in a case, the law imposes a criminal record on the offender.
In some circumstances, a criminal record will not, strictly speaking, have any adverse consequences for the person who has one. However, in many cases you may find yourself in an awkward situation for a past mistake.
The impacts of a criminal record on different spheres of life
Impacts on work life
A criminal record can have a lasting impact on your professional life. If your current or future employer decides to conduct a background check, your job may be at risk, a promotion may not be possible or hiring may be compromised.
Impacts on the ability to travel
If you want to discover new countries, keep in mind that your future trips, whether to the United States or elsewhere in the world, could also be cancelled due to your criminal record. Remember, entry into a country is not a right, but a privilege and only the government of the country you want to visit is in a position to accept you or not, depending on their entry conditions.
Impacts on insurance
If you plan to take out car or home insurance, be aware that it may be difficult to obtain if you have a criminal record, since many insurers do not want to take this risk. However, in some cases, it can be obtained by paying a higher fee than a person with no criminal record. For example, if you are convicted of an impaired driving offence, you can imagine how difficult it will be for an auto insurer to trust you.
Being charged does not mean you automatically end up with a criminal record
Of course, just because you are charged with a criminal offence does not automatically mean you will end up with a criminal record. There are ways to avoid it being imposed. If you are not convicted at trial, a judge will acquit you and you will not have a criminal record. Similarly, there are ways to acknowledge your guilt for a crime you have committed and avoid obtaining a criminal record, which is called absolution.
Absolutions can be granted according to the type of offence committed, as well as the best interests of the person who committed the offence. Absolution will not be permitted in all cases and only an experienced defence lawyer can advise and guide you through the legal steps to be taken to be eligible for this second chance.
Therefore, although some offences may seem trivial, a simple theft, threat, assault and even impaired driving will result in a criminal record being imposed if you are convicted.
Consult a criminal lawyer if charged and work to avoid a criminal record
If you are charged with a criminal offence, it is important to be represented by a qualified criminal lawyer so that a solid case can be prepared.
Do not hesitate to contact Attorneys at Law, experts will be at your disposal and can inform you about your chances of avoiding a criminal record.