Thousands of Maryland residents are currently attempting to move on with their lives after being convicted of a crime and serving their debt to society. But unfortunately, the effects and ramifications of a criminal record can negatively impact their lives long after they’ve served out their sentence.
A criminal record can cause issues for decades after the offense in question. Without adequate criminal defense, a person risks being convicted of a crime and suffering a lifetime of collateral consequences.
Being convicted of a crime is correlated very closely with loss of employment and negative employment consequences. First, most employed people who serve time in jail or prison end up losing wages while incarcerated, and many lose their jobs as a result.
Once free, people with convictions on their record struggle with discrimination from employers when trying to find a new job. Study after study shows that conviction of a crime leads to lower wages and earning power, along with higher rates of unemployment.
Having somewhere to live is one of the most fundamental needs of a human being. But having a criminal conviction can make it extremely difficult to find housing for years after the fact.
Many property owners explicitly forbid those with criminal records from living on their property, even when that’s where their family resides. The lack of wages due to not being able to find meaningful work also makes affording housing more difficult as well.
A criminal record can result in numerous other issues, from greater scrutiny by child welfare agencies to revocation of immigration status leading to deportment. Even trying to attend college or secure a driving license can be complicated by a criminal record.
Because rejoining society is immensely difficult, many end up reoffending, as they become desperate. This is why it is extremely important to do everything possible to create a compelling case to defend yourself in court.