Besides the immediate consequences of a criminal conviction – such as jail time or fines, having a crime on your permanent public record can continue to impact nearly every area of your life even long after your jail time is served and/or your fines are paid. Even if you’re only convicted of a minor crime or never convicted at all, your involvement with the criminal justice system can be stressful from that moment on, according to MoneyCrashers.com. And unfortunately, so will your interaction with many other areas of society.
Even minor criminal offenses on your record could affect the following (and more) areas of your professional opportunities:
- Transportation to and from work, and the ability to drive as part of your job. DWI convictions can result in licenses restricted, making commutes much more difficult, according to MoneyCrashers.
- Ability to drive as part of your job
- Commercial drivers’ licenses
- Pilots’ licenses
- Nursing licenses
- Fingerprint clearance cards
- Security clearances
- Rights to own a firearm
- Your ability to keep your current job. An employer can fire you if you have to go to court because you’ve been charged with a crime, if you miss work because you’ve been arrested, or even if you’re questioned about a crime and never charged.
- Ability to be hired in the future. Criminal convictions can often make it more difficult for a person to find employment. Most employers require criminal background checks.
- Your ability to focus at work or carry out job duties. Studies show that ex-prisoners can develop behaviors that increase social problems when returning to work and life outside prison.
- Hyper-Vigilance – Prison conditions can cause prisoners to adopt behaviors that can lead to self-imposed social isolation, even after release.
- Emotional Distancing – Behaviors developed as a means of protection in prison can lead to an inability to create or maintain personal bonds with others after jail time is served.
- Guilt and Shame. Research by the Association for Psychological Science shows that while a guilty or apologetic attitude may result in a lower likelihood of committing additional crimes in the future, defensive reactions to feelings of shame can result in blaming others for problems.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Prison can result in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). According to MoneyCrashers, common symptoms of PTSD include flashbacks, nightmares, emotional numbness, hyper-arousal, difficulty sleeping, unexpected outbursts of anger, and overwhelming feelings of anxiety or guilt. All these symptoms can impact your ability to work productively.
- Criminal records can prevent a foreign national from obtaining a green card, becoming a naturalized citizen, or obtaining a change in immigration status, according to Legal Match.
- Your social reputation, including how your current or prospective employers see you. Unfortunately, discrimination against those charged with crimes (even if never convicted) is widespread. Even in cases of wrongful accusation or conviction of crimes, the negative social stigma can last a lifetime.
- And more! These are just a sampling of the way a criminal charge or conviction on your record could affect your wellbeing for the rest of your life.
Beyond Your Professional Life
Besides being able to pay the bills, have a job you enjoy, or make a better salary, the impacts of a criminal record go far beyond your professional life. For example, criminal charges and convictions can also limit your child custody rights. Your family life could be affected! And additional criminal charges can result in more severe penalties and sentencing if a person already has a criminal record on file. Imagine the stress of worrying about even a minor charge such as a traffic violation. Your work life influences your personal life and your personal life influences your professional life, and a criminal record influences almost everything.
How Can You Change This?
If you’re charged with a criminal offense, you have the option to work with an experienced criminal defense attorney to try to get your charges dropped or reduced. Doing so could turn your life around! Don’t miss your opportunity to invest in a better future with more opportunities!
According to LegalMatch, one of the best things you can do for your future wellbeing is to hire a qualified attorney to fight to have your charges reduced or dropped, or your record cleared.
If you’re facing the negative and challenging implications of a criminal offense on your record, it’s not too late to turn things around. With over 12 years of experience, flat rate fees with no hidden costs, and personal experience on every case, Juan Tijerina is a criminal defense attorney you can trust! Call (956) 261-5609 or contact us online today!
4016 N. 22nd Street
McAllen, Texas 78504
Phone: (956) 261-5609
Phone: (512) 900-1126