After one or many run-ins with the law, you might be eager to clean up your criminal record. Maybe a one-time mistake led to a drunk driving charge, or you are ready to turn your life around. Personal, life and career goals can be complex with a history of arrest.
Understanding the ins and outs of your unique record and realizing which parts of your life your record impacts before you set realistic hopes is essential.
Effects of a criminal record
Perhaps you’ve spent some time navigating life with a past you aren’t the proudest of or have a recent charge you haven’t fully wrapped your head around yet. Either way, realizing how committing crimes can impact your everyday life is important.
Having a criminal past can create problems in one’s social and professional life. Socially, family or friends that used to stand by you through thick and through thin may no longer want to associate with you. This can be extremely painful and cause difficulty when you are hoping to right your wrongs and could use a support group to do so. Professionally, some crimes can lead to the loss of a job or the revocation of a professional license. And looking for new work opportunities can also come with barriers if a potential employer doesn’t like what they see in a criminal background check.
Fortunately, temporary and long-term solutions can help you begin to clean up your act and carry on with your life.
Ways to move forward
Firstly, looking into expungement will be the gateway to a fresh start. While not all crimes can be completely wiped off a record, expungement allows offenders to open a previously closed case and work toward dismissal. Depending on the severity of your crime, this could lead to meeting career advances with more ease.
In the meantime, learning how to cope with the consequences of your actions that created a criminal record can be helpful. It’s possible dependence on a substance caused legal problems; in that case, joining an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting in your area could be a step in the right direction. And if you’re struggling mentally in any capacity, calling a free helpline can do wonders.
Seeking legal solutions and finding an emotional support network isn’t easy. Looking to a criminal defense attorney for guidance can help you build a team of individuals who want to help you intentionally move forward.