Having a criminal record is a difficult burden to bear. Even if you were not convicted, any arrests made or charges brought against you remain on that record for everyone to see. It is a suspicious and embarrassing “black mark” on your record that can’t help but make people look at you in a different light.
Unfortunately, background checks are common for employment, housing, college, and loan applications, and any sign of a criminal record severely compromises these prospects. [...]
Having a criminal record is not an easy burden to bear. Even if you received a not guilty verdict or had your charges dropped or dismissed, charges and arrests remain on your record.
Unfortunately, explaining the black marks on your record can erect a serious barrier between you and the job, education, or housing that you want. Worse, criminal records are completely public. All anyone needs to learn all about your past transgressions is an internet connection.
In early July, the Chicago City Council’s Committee on Public Safety passed a resolution encouraging Springfield lawmakers to expand criminal record sealing and allow more offenders to have their records sealed sooner. The resolution does not make any legislative changes, but it does indicate that more reforms are on the way.
What might this mean for you if you have a criminal record? First let’s take a look at what criminal record sealing is and how it works in [...]
If you are facing criminal charges, the last thing you’re probably thinking about is your criminal record. After all, the idea of spending time in prison, paying exorbitant fines, or even having to deal with something like community service or a driver’s license suspension seems like a far bigger deal.
But what you may not realize is that having a criminal record dramatically decreases the odds that you can find a job, rent an apartment in a good neighborhood, [...]
For many past offenders who are looking to turn their life around, expunging or sealing their record is an important step towards moving past old mistakes. Through doing so, most people hope to apply confidently for higher paying jobs, colleges, housing, and federal resources. A black mark on your permanent record can close many doors. The hope is that through the process of expungement or sealing, those doors will be opened again.
While probation offices across Illinois are closed or operating with fewer employees due to COVID-19, there may be a decrease in technical probation violations resulting in any real punishments.
For many years, criminal justice researchers have gathered a lot of data about whether or not punishments for non-criminal probation violations are helpful to anyone. With many probation offices changing the way they do things during the COVID-19 pandemic, that question is being asked again.