If your child has been arrested as a juvenile with a crime and has gone through a juvenile adjudication, anyone who is interested can find out. The public can access this juvenile criminal record via the internet, the Washington State Patrol, or the courthouse. The easy public access to your child’s criminal record will affect his or her future in many drastic ways.
First, he or she may not be able to pursue his or her desired career because many employers conduct criminal background checks. If your child wants to work with children or hold a job that allows unsupervised access to children, a criminal record will definitely stand in the way. Moreover, federal law bars certain types of felons from working in specific fields, like the generic drug industry or airport security.
Second, private and public housing landlords are allowed to request criminal background checks. As a result, your child may have a difficult time finding a place to live.
Third, a felony juvenile adjudication may disqualify your child from serving in the military, because, among other things, a juvenile criminal record prevents a person from possessing a firearm. There are also other areas of life that are negatively impacted by juvenile criminal records, like college acceptance and obtaining various tax benefits.
Luckily, there is a process that an attorney can help you with that will hide your child’s criminal record from the public. This multi-step process is called “record sealing.” Your child’s juvenile record can be sealed if he or she (1) does not owe any court-ordered fines, (2) has no criminal charges pending, and (3) has either been crime free for 2 years for anything lower than a Class A felony or 5 years for a class A felony.
Speak with a defense attorney from David O Defense to see if your child is eligible for juvenile record sealing. We also recommend that you meet with us to determine the proper procedure for record sealing based on the conviction and to help you get through every step of the process correctly. Give your child a fresh start by sealing his or her criminal record. If this issue applies to you or your child, please call 206-459-6392 for a consultation.
Written by Anastasia Kidniz