Collateral Consequences

If you are found guilty of an offense, you will be “sentenced.” Sentencing can involve many kinds of punishments, including time in jail or prison. See Sentencing to learn more.

Being found guilty of an offense, also known as a “conviction,” can also impact someone’s life in other ways, beyond the sentence that person receives. A conviction can impact:

  • Jobs,
  • Housing,
  • Benefits,
  • Citizenship,
  • Education,
  • Student loans,
  • And more.

The negative effects from a conviction are also called “Collateral Consequences” or “Invisible Punishments.” Collateral consequences can impact someone’s life even if they did not know about them when Plea Bargaining or pleading guilty. In some cases, even just an arrest can lead to collateral consequences.

Collateral Consequences Basics
Find out the consequences outside of the criminal court system. Follow links to calculate the consequences for your crime or offense.

Adoption Consequences
Learn how a criminal conviction can affect your right to adopt or foster a child.

Voting Consequences
Read about how a felony conviction affects your right to vote.

Public Office Consequences
Learn how a misdemeanor or felony conviction can affect your ability to be a police officer, firefighter, notary, elected official or other public office job.

Student Loans Consequences
An adult criminal conviction may result in a loss of financial aid. Criminal convictions for drugs automatically stop federal student aid.

Employment Licenses Consequences
Many jobs require licenses before you can hold the job. Read how criminal convictions can prevent you from getting a license or can take your license away.

Sex Offender Registration Consequences
Sex offenders are listed on the NYS Sex Offender Registry and are barred from holding various jobs.

Official Policy on ICE Arrests in Courthouses
Learn what immigration agents can do when you come to court on a civil case.

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