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Will a Felony Conviction Affect My Career in New Jersey?

Unfortunately, the short answer is yes, a felony conviction will affect your career in most states, including New Jersey. Felony convictions can potentially result in an individual looking at years in prison. The effects of a conviction stay with you, even after serving your time. Sadly, being a convicted felon can negatively alter the way people perceive you. After serving your sentence you probably want to move on with your life. Carrying your conviction around with you can make the moving-on process difficult.

To limit the impact a felony conviction will have on your life, work with a Bergen County criminal defense attorney to understand your rights and strengthen your case.

What Ways Does a Felony Affect My Career?

Colleges require that an applicant disclose any history of criminal record when applying. If you are charged with a felony before attending college or want to return to school for any reason after being convicted, you will have to share that information with admissions. Unfortunately depending on the type of crime, it could negatively affect whether or not you are admitted to the school.

If you are already employed when you are convicted you may end up losing your job. Your employer is within their rights to terminate you for various reasons after you are convicted of a felony. The reasons are plentiful and can include you having to take leave to serve an extended sentence, your crime exposing a moral problem that your company takes issue with, or if the crime was related to your position at the company.

Your felony could prevent you from getting a job, especially in certain fields. Many employers inquire about felonies during the application process and perform background checks on potential hires. By law, you do not have to inform any company about criminal convictions. However, if they decide to do a background check they will most likely discover it on their own and it could affect their decision of whether or not to hire you. People convicted of sex or drug crimes may not be allowed to work with children. A felony can limit your career options greatly.

Can My Felony Ever Be Expunged in New Jersey?

Depending on the type and severity of the crime, it is possible to have your felony expunged, meaning removed from your record. Eligible felonies can generally be expunged 10 years after time served if you petition the court and win. For one-time offenders who have committed no other offense, big or small, it is sometimes possible to fast-track the expungement after only 5 years.

There are some crimes that under New Jersey law cannot be expunged. Those include arson, robbery, sex crimes, homicide, perjury, and bribery. Expungement can be complex and varies depending on the specifics of the case, so discuss your situation with a knowledgeable Bergen County expungement attorney.

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