Is A Misdemeanor On Your Criminal Record

by ECL Writer
Misdemeanors on Background Checks

Yes. A misdemeanor is a criminal offense that is considered less serious than a felony. It is typically punishable by fines, probation, or less than one year in jail. Some common examples of misdemeanors include traffic violations, petty theft, disorderly conduct, and simple assault. If you are charged and convicted of a misdemeanor offense, it will be added to your criminal record.

Having a misdemeanor on your criminal record can have negative consequences on various aspects of your life. It can affect your employment opportunities, housing options, and even your ability to obtain credit. Many employers conduct background checks on potential employees, and a misdemeanor on your record may be a red flag to them. It may cause them to question your character and your ability to be a responsible employee.

Furthermore, some professions require a clean criminal record. For example, if you want to become a licensed healthcare professional, you may be required to have a clean criminal record. Additionally, if you are applying for certain government jobs or security clearances, a misdemeanor on your record could disqualify you.

A misdemeanor on your record may also impact your ability to rent an apartment or obtain a mortgage. Landlords and mortgage lenders often conduct background checks on potential renters or buyers. A misdemeanor on your record may cause them to view you as a higher risk, and they may deny your application or charge you a higher fee.

Moreover, having a misdemeanor on your record may limit your ability to obtain credit. Banks and credit card companies may view you as a higher risk and offer you less favorable terms, such as higher interest rates or lower credit limits.

If you have a misdemeanor on your record, there are ways to mitigate its negative impact. One option is to seek expungement. Expungement is a legal process that removes a criminal conviction from your record. The availability of expungement varies by jurisdiction, and certain offenses may not be eligible for expungement. However, if you are eligible, expungement can help you avoid the negative consequences of having a criminal record.

Another option is, to be honest about your misdemeanor on your job, housing, or credit applications. Honesty is always the best policy, and some employers or landlords may be willing to overlook a misdemeanor offense if you are upfront about it.

Having a misdemeanor on your criminal record can have negative consequences on various aspects of your life. It may impact your employment opportunities, housing options, and ability to obtain credit. However, there are ways to mitigate its negative impacts, such as seeking expungement or being honest about your record on the job, housing, or credit applications.

How Long Does A Misdemeanor Stay On Your Record?

The length of time that a misdemeanor stays on your criminal record varies by jurisdiction. In general, misdemeanors remain on your record indefinitely unless you take action to have them expunged or sealed.

Expungement is a legal process that removes a criminal conviction from your record, which means that it will no longer appear on background checks. The availability of expungement varies by state and may depend on the type of offense and the length of time that has passed since the conviction. In some cases, expungement may only be available after a certain amount of time has passed since the conviction, and the offender has completed any required probation or community service.

In some states, misdemeanors can be automatically expunged after a certain amount of time has passed, typically 5-10 years, as long as there have been no subsequent convictions. However, in other states, misdemeanors may remain on your record permanently unless you take steps to have them expunged.

The length of time that a misdemeanor stays on your record can vary, but taking action to have it expunged may help mitigate its negative impact on your life.

How Long Does It Take A Misdemeanor To Go Away?

A misdemeanor, legally speaking, stays on your record for life. Background checks, however, occasionally only cover a predetermined period of time. Texas, for instance, has a “seven-year rule” in force. This regulation prohibits background check businesses from disclosing any convictions that are older than seven years. Positions with yearly salaries of $75,000 or more are exempt from the restriction. Your one misdemeanor conviction should not appear on your background check report if it was 20 years ago and you are looking for a $45,000 job in Texas.

California, Colorado, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, and Washington are among the states that have seven-year background check laws in place in addition to Texas. The seven-year rule is in effect in these states for all criminal histories, not just misdemeanors.

The reporting of convictions may be restricted by state law, albeit each state handles it slightly differently. The seven-year period in Texas begins on the day of disposition. In other circumstances, the clock might begin when a prison term or parole period comes to an end. State-by-state variations in income exceptions are also present.

Do Misdemeanors Show Up On A Background Check?

The majority of the time, the answer to this query is “yes.” A criminal record is believed to include any misdemeanors. As a result, if an employer conducts a criminal background check on you and discovers that you have a misdemeanor charge on your record, that offense is probably going to appear on the check.

Having said that, the type of background check that the company is conducting also affects the answer. Records are kept at the county level because county court frequently handles misdemeanor charges. There is no certainty that your misdemeanor offense will appear in the report if an employer runs a state- or multi-jurisdictional-level background check but omits the county-level search.

A misdemeanor conviction may not appear on the background check report if you are applying for a job outside of the county where you were found guilty of it.

There is no guarantee that your misdemeanor will not appear on your background check in either of these scenarios. Your record might be kept at the state level because county courts frequently report to state repositories. Employers occasionally examine address records to determine the previous residences of candidates. In order to get a more comprehensive picture of a person’s past, they use this information to request county criminal history checks in each location of residence.

You shouldn’t presume, though, that potential employers won’t learn about a misdemeanor charge. You should be truthful if asked on a job application if you have ever been convicted of a crime. It is absolutely fair and rational for you to withhold that information if you reside in a region where ban-the-box legislation prohibits employers from inquiring about prior criminal behavior.

Can You Get A Misdemeanor Expunged?

Yes. Misdemeanor expungement is rather common, although felony convictions are frequently very difficult to remove (assuming expungement is even permitted). Depending on a number of variables, including your state of residence, the interval since the conviction, the misdemeanor you are attempting to erase, and if you have any additional criminal activity on your record, your odds of obtaining an expungement will vary.

Your prospects of having your conviction expunged are stronger the longer it has been since your conviction. If you simply have a misdemeanor on your record, your chances will also drastically increase.

A misdemeanor might still disqualify you from some types of jobs, even though companies are normally more inclined to hire a candidate with one than they would be to hire a felon who has been convicted of a felony. Expungement is a useful option to consider if you believe that a minor conviction is preventing you from getting certain jobs.

To ascertain whether your conviction is initially eligible for expungement, you need to examine the laws in your state. If it is, you should probably speak with a lawyer. You can manage the petitioning procedure with the aid of a lawyer, who can also represent you in court. To help you get started on your investigation into expungement alternatives, we have established a page.

The misdemeanor charge is legally dropped if the court grants your request and your record is cleansed. You can truthfully respond that you have never been convicted of a crime if an application asks about your criminal past. The misdemeanor should no longer appear on background check reports and cannot be used legally as a reason to exclude you from consideration for employment.

Hiring A Lawyer For Misdemeanor Cases

Hiring a lawyer for misdemeanor cases is an important decision that should not be taken lightly. Misdemeanor offenses are typically considered less serious than felony offenses, but they can still have serious consequences, including fines, probation, and even jail time.

A skilled misdemeanor lawyer can help you navigate the legal system and defend your rights. They can analyze the evidence against you, negotiate with the prosecutor, and represent you in court if necessary. They can also advise you on your options and potential outcomes, and help you make informed decisions about how to proceed.

When choosing a lawyer for a misdemeanor case, it is important to look for someone with experience in criminal law, particularly in the specific area in which you have been charged. You should also consider their reputation, track record of success, and communication style. It is important to have a lawyer who is responsive and communicative, and who will keep you informed throughout the legal process.

Hiring a lawyer for a misdemeanor case can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case. It is important to choose a lawyer who is experienced, reputable, and communicative, and who will work tirelessly to defend your rights and interests.

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