Brooklyn Record Sealing
It is a sad truth we must confront – many employers will not, and do not, hire applicants with criminal convictions on their record. Economic studies have been conducted and reveal the harsh reality – when someone applies for a job and admits they have a criminal record, their chance of actually getting hired is reduced by between 15 and 30 percent, according to Prison Legal News.
An employee with the Legal Aid Society told the New York Daily News that “Really the best way for a New Yorker to have a fair chance at finding a job is for an employer to not know about that conviction.”
Although expungement is not available in New York, sealing of criminal records is.
Given the troubling economic data that shows a vicious cycle of unemployment, destitution, and return to crime for people who are forced to carry the scarlet letter of a criminal conviction on their record, the New York Legislature voted to enact a new law that broadens the ability for someone to have their record sealed, according to an article published by CCRC.
New York Legislature to the Rescue
The new law is codified in § 160.59 of the New York Criminal Procedure Law. Under this new law, a Brooklyn resident, or any resident of New York, may request that two convictions be sealed by a court. This is a dramatic expansion of the sealing rights afforded to citizens. Prior to enacting § 160.59, the process for getting a record sealed was much more difficult and quite limited in scope.
Despite the expansion, there remains a number of limitations associated with the new law. For example, you can only have one felony conviction sealed. In addition, at least 10 years must have elapsed between your last conviction and when you file an application for sealing your record. Also, if you were convicted of a sex crime or violent felony, you cannot have those convictions sealed.
Sealed Criminal Record Not Viewable by the Public
Once your record is officially sealed, it is not viewable or accessible by the general public, including a prospective employer. This means when you are applying for a job, you do not need to check the “criminal conviction” box, which thereby increases the odds of you securing a job. Once sealed, only law enforcement and certain licensing agencies would be able to view your criminal record.
Even if your criminal record cannot be sealed, there are affirmative steps you can take to improve your chances of securing employment. For example, it is possible to apply for a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities. Or, you can apply for a Certificate of Good Conduct.
Basically, if you have more than two felonies, you can pursue the Certificate of Good Conduct. If you have one felony, you can pursue the Certificate of Relief.
Brooklyn Criminal Record Sealing Lawyer Ready to Help
As you can tell, if you have a criminal record, there are affirmative steps you can take to try and get your record sealed and shielded from view by the public. To secure this seal, you should retain the services of a Brooklyn criminal record sealing lawyer. To learn more, contact Levy & Rizzo, LLC, the Clean Slate Attorneys today for further assistance.