Ban the Box: Helping Former Offenders Find Employment

Ban the Box, a campaign to end discrimination against those with criminal convictions, has been taking off across the country over the past several years. Ban the Box legislation has recently started to be enacted at the state level. Under these laws, job applications cannot include a “box” asking about criminal history. However, employers will still be able to ask about criminal history later in the screening process, either at the interview or with background checks. Continue reading

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New Illinois Law Expands Expungement To Include Some Felony Offenses

A new Illinois law, which goes into effect on January 1, 2014, allows people convicted of certain Class 3 and 4 felony offenses to seal their records. This change in the expungement law expands eligibility for record clearing relief in Illinois and will allow more former offenders to secure employment, apply for housing, and move forward with their lives.
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California’s 1170 Felony Realignment Expungement Law

Governor Jerry Brown recently signed into law Assembly Bill 651, which fills a critical gap in California’s expungement law. Under the new law, codified as Penal Code Section 1203.41, individuals sentenced under Felony Realignment, Penal Code Section 1170(h)(5), may be eligible to expunge the felony conviction from their criminal record. Continue reading

Posted in Blog, General news | 2 Comments Wins New York Record Sealing Appeal, a division of the Law Firm of Higbee and Associates, recently won an appeal on behalf of a New York client who petitioned to seal his conviction. The New York appellate court reversed the lower court’s order denying defendant’s motion to seal the record of his conviction and sent the case back to the trial court to hold a hearing on the matter. Continue reading

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New Jersey’s New Conditional Dismissal Program

On January 4, 2014, a New Jersey law that establishes a conditional dismissal program in the Municipal Courts for first-time offenders charged with certain disorderly persons offenses goes into effect. A defendant who successfully completes this program will be eligible to expunge his or her record six months after the case is dismissed. The conditional dismissal program will supplement New Jersey’s existing diversion programs, which include pre-trial intervention (PTI) for certain indictable offenses in the Superior Court and conditional discharge for certain disorderly persons drug offenses in the municipal court. Continue reading

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