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    Know and Protect Your Rights in a Criminal Defense Matter

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      Know and Protect Your Rights in a Criminal Defense Matter

          Martinez Certificates of Rehabilitation Attorney

          If you were convicted of or pled guilty to a crime and have served your sentence, now may be the time to clear your criminal record. Applying for a “Certificate of Rehabilitation” demonstrates to the public that you have been rehabilitated and upheld a life of morality since your conviction and release from supervision.

          While this sounds simple, it may not be as clear-cut as it seems due to several eligibility factors that must be met. Discuss your prior criminal conviction with an experienced Martinez “Certificate of Rehabilitation” attorney. A knowledgeable attorney like those at The Nieves Law Firm could assist you in taking this critical step to move forward with your life.

          Benefits of Receiving a California Certificate of Rehabilitation

          Certificates of Rehabilitation (COR) are court orders acknowledging that an individual has been living as a law-abiding citizen for a required number of years. A COR does not remove convictions from a person’s record, but it does result in an order and certificate issued by the court finding that the person is now a legally upstanding citizen and recommending the individual for consideration for a pardon by the Governor.

          There are numerous benefits to obtaining a Certificate of Rehabilitation,  including:

          • An automatic application for a Governor’s Pardon of the underlying crime, as outlined in California Penal Code § 4852.16
          • Eligibility for certain State licensing, such as contractor’s license, real estate license, or license to practice law or medicine, and possibly even restoration of gun rights by allowing licensing and gun registration
          • Exemption from the sexual predator registry for certain offenses

          With the help of a seasoned attorney who knows the criminal justice system in Martinez, individuals may have the opportunity to secure Certificates of Rehabilitation and get their lives back on track.

          Who Can Apply for a Certificate of Rehabilitation?

          Certificate of Rehabilitation relief is not available to everyone. Cal. Penal Code § 4852.01 outlines specific eligibility criteria for convicted individuals who completed a felony sentence, expunged a felony conviction, or expunged a misdemeanor sex offense listed in Cal. Penal Code § 290, which establishes the State’s sex offender registry.

          The following requirements must also be satisfied to obtain a Certificate of Rehabilitation:

          • No incarceration for a new offense since completing their sentence
          • Conclusion of the supervisory probation or parole period
          • Meets the timeframe for residency and of 5 years in California
          • Served the additional time mandated by statute for proving rehabilitation (5 years plus 2, 4, or 5 additional years)
          • Not otherwise barred from receiving a Certificate of Rehabilitation

          California Penal Code §§ 4852.01(c) and 4852.13(b) outline the circumstances that will disqualify an individual from qualifying for a Certificate of Rehabilitation. They include:

          • mandatory life parole
          • service in the military and being convicted of new criminal violations
          • committal of a federal crime or offense in another jurisdiction
          • engagement in certain sex crimes with children
          • court determination that the sex offender is a continuing threat to minors

          The Waiting Period Before Applying

          Before requesting a Certificate of Rehabilitation, an individual must meet specific timeframes as a California inhabitant and a law-abiding resident (i.e., the rehabilitation period). Individuals must have lived in California for five straight years leading up to the filing. Cal. Penal Code § 4852.03 explains that the counting for the rehabilitation period commences upon release from community supervision, mandatory supervision, parole, or probation.

          In addition to the residency requirement, certain crimes require an additional two to five years to pass. Under Cal. Penal Code § 4852.03(a)(1), the following crimes add four years, requiring the passage of nine years before petitioning the court:

          • murder, assault with force to cause bodily harm
          • aggravated kidnapping
          • any death sentence offense

          As required under Cal. Penal Code § 4852.03(a)(2)(A), many sex crimes demand a total wait-time of ten years (five years residency and an additional five years).

          All other offenses not requiring four or five additional years result in an additional rehabilitation period of two year for a total of 7 years from the time of release from supervision.

          Attorneys who frequently file Certificates of Rehabilitation petitions in Martinez understand how to calculate the minimum timeframes. They may be able to help you determine if you qualify for the Certificate of Rehabilitation and apply for the Petition as well.

          Seek the Advice of an Experienced Martinez Certificate of Rehabilitation Attorney

          A Certificate of Rehabilitation can significantly improve your standing in the community and your prospects for a successful life. However, the granting of a Certificate of Rehabilitation is not automatic and requires careful preparation of the application. Our Martinez Certificate of Rehabilitation attorneys here at The Nieves Law Firm have the necessary experience to help you submit a persuasive petition. Call us today and set up a consultation with a skilled member of our team.

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