The consequences of an Arizona criminal conviction can last a lifetime. Even after you've paid your fines, served your jail or prison time, completed your probation or parole, or otherwise paid your debt to society—the collateral consequences of a conviction can continue to haunt you, creating severe social and economic barriers that make it difficult to get ahead.
How Your Life May Be Affected by a Criminal Conviction
Here are just a few of the many ways your life and future could be adversely affected by a criminal conviction:
- Employment. A criminal record can limit your job opportunities, as many employers run background checks on applicants. Additionally, a criminal record may prevent you from working in some fields. For example, you may not be able to obtain the Arizona Department of Public Safety (AZDPS) fingerprint clearance needed to work as a teacher, physical therapist, or in other positions in industries like health and childcare.
- Gun rights. Certain convictions may bar you from possessing a gun. However, a skilled attorney may be able to help some convicts restore this right.
- Housing. Federal law prohibits people with certain types of convictions from accessing public housing and allows local housing authorities to deny housing based on criminal activity at their discretion. Convictions can also make it more difficult to rent from private owners.
- Adoption. Arizona requires prospective foster and adoptive parents to pass an extensive background check.
- Driving privileges. Certain crimes, such as traffic violations and DUIs/DWIs, can lead to the suspension or revocation of your drivers license. In some cases, if you are allowed to continue driving, you'll be required to use an ignition interlock device.
- Immigration. A criminal conviction could result in deportation for immigrants and non-citizens.
- Voting and jury rights. These rights are suspended while you serve your prison sentence and complete probation or parole, and are restored automatically.
Let Our Flagstaff Criminal Defense Attorneys Fight to Protect Your Future
At Griffen & Stevens Law Firm, PLLC, our expert criminal defense attorneys vigorously defend clients against a wide range of criminal charges. We work to protect your rights, avoid a conviction, and mitigate the negative effects associated with your criminal case. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for a free, in-depth initial consultation.