Relief from Juvenile Sex Offender Registration
The requirement of registering as a sex offender has severe consequences for many juveniles, particularly as they grow older and apply for jobs, college, and housing. Individuals on the sex offender registry can be denied admission to college, employment, and housing. Removing your name from the sex offender registry is an important step in regaining these opportunities. Relief from Sex Offender Registration is also an important and necessary step to requesting that your record be Sealed. The petition from relief for Sex Offender Registration must come before the request for sealing.
Washington State permits juveniles adjudicated of a sex offense to request relief from the duty to register as a sex offender when certain circumstances are met. Granting a petition for relief from sex offender registration is discretionary, meaning a Judge may refuse to grant the petition. Demonstrating to the Judge that a juvenile has been rehabilitated and no longer poses a threat to the community is the key to a successful petition.
This request must be made to a Judge through a formal petition. The juvenile must show that he or she has been rehabilitated and no longer poses a threat to the community. Your attorney will prepare documents and ensure that you are providing the Judge with information to support the request for relief from the duty to register. Michele’s understanding of the concerns of Judges and the community is reflected in her outstanding record of successful petitions.
When to Bring the Petition
Depending on the underlying offense, the petition may be brought either twenty-four months or sixty months after the adjudication or the date the juvenile was released from confinement if any was imposed. Before bringing a petition you should consult with an attorney because other events, such as the filing of new criminal charges or a Failure to Register as a Sex Offender charge, can impact the timing of the motion.
The Judge will determine, after reviewing the petition materials, whether you have shown by a preponderance of the evidence that you are sufficiently rehabilitated to warrant removal from the registry. Preponderance of the evidence is the lowest possible standard applied to criminal proceedings. However, this does not mean a Judge will automatically grant your petition. Judges are very careful about granting relief petitions especially as more individuals are convicted of second and third sex offenses. These cases receive wide media attention which alarms the community. Therefore, it is essential to bring a well-prepared petition. Michele has successfully brought numerous petitions for relief from registration and is skilled in presenting detailed information that supports relieving the duty to register.
Preparing for your Petition
Michele will work with you and your family to ensure your petition includes all the necessary information. At a minimum, you will need a letter from a certified sex offender treatment provider, a current polygraph exam, letters of support explaining why your petition should be granted, and other documents demonstrating that you do not pose a risk to the community. Michele will also work with you to prepare a personal statement and to address the Judge during your hearing in support of your petition.