The Importance of Expunging Minor in Possession Charges
We all make youthful indiscretions. Some of us never stop paying for them. Past convictions can continue to haunt you long after you’ve finished paying for them. When you’re convicted of a crime, not only do you have to serve your punishment, but you also have to live with the conviction on your record, where it can be seen by any prospective employer. And many employers don’t care if you’re rehabilitated or not; if they have the choice, they’ll go for the applicant without a record. And in this tough economy, with unemployment the highest it’s been in 26 years, you can’t provide to limit your employment opportunities.
A minor in possession charge can be a very serious problem if you don’t take care of it in the right way. An officer an issue a minor in possession (MIP) charge if anyone under the age of 21 shows signs of being intoxicated. Punishment usually involves a fine of up to $500, with the possibility of parole or community service in addition, and already the loss of a driver’s license. While these are inconvenient, the real punishment is living with the conviction on your record, where anyone can see it.
Fortunately, minor in possession charges are comparatively easy to have removed from your record, or sealed so that other people cannot see them. To do so, you will need to seek an expungement, a legal procedure that seals your record. To get one, you’ll need to meet certain requirements. But if you do, it could be the best decision you’ve made. The requirements vary by jurisdiction, but generally they are:
- Have only one conviction on your criminal record.
- This conviction must not have been a violent crime. An MIP conviction is not considered violent.
- You must have served the terms of your sentence, and a certain amount of time must have passed since you finished serving it.
Other requirements may vary. If you meet these requirements, you can contact a lawyer to help put the time of action into motion. After the expungement has been completed, employers and universities will no longer be able to review your criminal record. Expungement can open doors before closed to you.