JERSEY CITY and NEWARK, New Jersey. Having a drug charge, DUI, or other criminal charge on your record can impact your ability to get hired for certain jobs, access certain social support programs, and can haunt you for years to come. As more prosecutors and communities understand the long-term impact that a criminal record can have on individuals, their families, and on the community at large, some prosecutors are making it easier for those with minor crimes to seek expungements.
The current state of the criminal justice system means that even after individuals have served their time, their criminal record can follow them for years to come. In some states, individuals lose the right to vote, even after they have served their time in jail. Other states permit employers to ask applicants about their criminal records. Many individuals are haunted by a criminal record involving minor charges. These individuals may struggle to find jobs, and may not be able to participate in certain community activities. Yet, with expungement, individuals are able to clear their names for good, allowing them to finally move on.
According to the New York Times, 20 states have laws that allow individuals with criminal records to seek expungements or seal their records. Expungement involves a delicate balance. Many in law enforcement find criminal records helpful when it comes to identifying new crimes. However, civil rights advocates claim that permanent records can impact a person’s life forever. People who are unable to find gainful employment due to their criminal record might turn to crime to make ends meet, creating a vicious cycle.
Do you qualify for an expungement? The process can sometimes be complex. Many who seek expungements will hire a qualified criminal defense lawyer like the Jersey City and Newark criminal defense lawyer at the Law Office of Eric M. Mark. Different states have different processes for expungement. While some areas make it relatively easy and even hold expungement events where individuals with minor convictions can clear their names, in some places across the country, it is very difficult to get an expungement, even after a person has served his or her time. Yet, most expungements involve minor crimes, like driving without a license and marijuana possession.
According to the Collateral Consequences Resource Center, New Jersey allows for the expungement of most drug crimes following the successful completion of drug court. For other crimes, individuals can petition the court for expungement up to three times.
If you have a criminal record and your criminal record is impacting your ability to get a job or participate meaningfully in the community, you may have the right to seek an expungement in New Jersey. Contact the Law Office of Eric M. Mark, a Jersey City and Newark, criminal defense lawyer near you.
Law Office of Eric M. Mark
Address: 201 Washington St.
Newark, NJ 07102
Phone: (973) 453-2009
JERSEY CITY OFFICE
By Appointment Only
121 Newark Ave., Suite 515
Jersey City, NJ 07302
Phone: (201) 713-2227