If you have been accused of a sex crime, you will be informed that upon conviction you must register as a sex offender. But what does it really mean to register as a sex offender? This is a question we are often asked by clients and potential clients alike. A person is required to register as a sex offender with the Sexual Offender Registry Board, commonly known as SORB, if he or she is convicted of certain sex offenses.
Common examples of sex crimes requiring registration upon conviction:
If you are required to register as a sex offender, it can be an onerous task that will follow you through life. As a Quincy sex crime attorney, Richard Sweeney understands that sex offender registration can be overwhelming, with so much riding on your future. To discuss your case further with a lawyer who fully understands the laws, please do not hesitate to reach out to Sweeney & Associates, LLC.
Registration may seem easy but many people find it much more burdensome than they initially thought. Life will take on a new normalcy where registration becomes an annual requirement because it is not a one-time act.
You will need to submit a form that includes:
Not only will you be required to constantly verify your information, but the majority of sex offenders will have to register for at least 20 years. Some people will be required to register for life and some will be able to terminate their registration obligation early. The facts of each individual case and the crimes you were convicted of will determine how long you will have to register but you should assume it will be a lengthy period of time.
Quincy sex crime lawyer, Richard Sweeney, offers insight on the different levels of sex offender registration. To begin, Level 1 sex offenders are able to maneuver through life much easier than level 2 and level 3 offenders but any level sex offender will likely encounter problems finding employment and housing. Sex offenders can find themselves homeless due to restrictions and difficulties finding stable housing. Even if not homeless, many find themselves moving frequently and often finding themselves to be unwelcome.
Sex offender registration can prevent you from attending your child’s extracurricular activities or school functions. As the population ages, level 3 sex offenders are also running into difficulties because it is a crime to live in a nursing home. Even a level 3 sex offender confined to a bed or wheelchair cannot live in a nursing home. Depending on your classification level, the public including neighbors, co-workers, professors, and so on will be notified of your status as a sex offender by the police or the public can contact the police department or SORB to find out information about you.
There is also a stigma attached to being a sex offender. While the intention of the sex offender list may have been noble when it was first created, the laws now sweep up countless individuals who do not pose a danger to the public. For example, a 17-year-old boy who had sex with his 16-year-old girlfriend could be forced to register as a sex offender after being convicted of statutory rape.
The two people could end up married with children yet the status of being a sex offender will follow him and his family for years. Stigmas can affect the emotional and mental wellbeing of any person required to register regardless of the facts behind the crime and requirement to register.
There are also criminal consequences related to a failure to register or providing incorrect information on the registration form. Not only could you be charged with a new crime that is punishable by jail, but if you fail to register for the sex offense you are on probation for then you will also face a probation violation hearing and the possibility of additional jail time.
In many cases, we have been successful negotiating plea agreements that keep clients out of jail but still require them to register as a sex offender. Hiring experienced and knowledgeable Quincy sex crime attorneys can help you navigate the registration world.
Contact us at Sweeney & Associates, LLC at 617-328-6900 today for a free consultation.