Getting Rights Back

There are a number of laws and rules that stop people convicted of certain crimes from getting certain licenses, or getting certain benefits, like public housing. This is why it is important to understand theCollateral Consequences of a criminal conviction during plea bargaining or sentencing.

There are certain certificates called Certificate of Relief from Civil Disabilities and Certificate of Good Conduct that can remove the consequences. The certificates can get rights back that you lost because of your conviction. If you get one of these certificates you won’t be automatically disqualified for a particular job or license. If you have a certificate when you apply for a job or occupational license, the employer or licensing agency must assume that you are rehabilitated unless there is something to say otherwise.

Certificate of Relief from Civil Disabilities
This certificate can help you if you have been convicted of:

  • Any number of misdemeanors, and
  • No more than 1 felony

Certificate of Good Conduct
This certificate can help you if:

  • You have been convicted of 2 or more felonies
  • You want to apply for a public office job

Sealed Records: After 10 Years
Someone may be able to have misdemeanors and certain felonies sealed under Section 160.59 of the Criminal Procedure La. You may be eligible for sealing if you:

  • Have not been found guilty of a crime for at least 10 years since your last conviction and/or release, and
  • You have 2 convictions or less on your criminal record.
    • These convictions may be 2 misdemeanors, or 1 misdemeanor and 1 felony. If you have 2 felony convictions, you are not eligible for sealing under Section 160.59.

Sealed Records: Drug-Related Crime
Certain drug-related felony and misdemeanor convictions can be conditionally sealed under CPL 160.58 if you have completed a drug treatment program. See if you qualify and learn how to ask the Court to seal your records.

Sex Offender Petition for Relief or Modification
Read about when and how a sex offender can ask to be removed from the registry or change his or her risk level.

Relief From Federal Firearms Disabilities in Guardianship Cases
Read the court rule about petitioning the court for relief from firearms disabilities in cases where a guardian was appointed.

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