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Understanding the “collateral consequences” of a conviction

On Behalf of | Nov 16, 2023 | Criminal Defense |

When California residents face a criminal charge, they understandably have one primary concern: protecting their freedom. From misdemeanor charges to the highest of felony cases, criminal charges can land people behind bars, sometimes for years. However, besides concerns about how your freedom might be impacted by a criminal case, our readers should also understand some of the “collateral consequences” of a criminal conviction.

Impact of collateral consequences

For those who don’t know, the term “collateral consequences” refers to the range of ways a criminal conviction can impact your life beyond limiting your freedom while incarcerated. One of the most common collateral consequences is a driver’s license suspension, oftentimes imposed when a person is convicted of driving while intoxicated. No matter the length of time of the suspension, the inconvenience is real for those who need reliable transportation every day to get to work or school, for example.

But, there are many other forms of collateral consequences, depending on the crime involved, such as: firearm ownership or possession restrictions; sex offender registration; and revocation of business licenses, just to name a few. And that doesn’t even get into how a criminal conviction on your record might impact your ability to get or keep a job or housing, for example.

There is no doubt about it – a criminal conviction of any kind can have a significant impact on your life. If you are facing criminal charges in California, it is crucial that you formulate a defense strategy as soon as possible to attempt to reduce or avoid the worst of consequences in the case.