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RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 13515
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
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My husband has a felony trespass and theft

Customer Question

hi my husband has a felony for criminal trespass and theft of unlawful taking from when he was 17. He was tried as an adult . He is now 35 years old and finding a job is impossible for him Because of this felony
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
We live in Pennsylvania and would like to move closer to my work , but everywhere he has applied has turned him down because of the felony on the background check
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Is There a way to make it disappear when they do a background check so he could get employment somewhere ?
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
Pennsylvania's laws regarding expungement - that is, the process by which a criminal record is destroyed or sealed - is among the toughest (and stupidest, in my opinion) in the country, unfortunately.
Under Pennsylvania state law, a criminal record may qualify for expungement only if:
1) A person committed a summary offense (a low-level offense that's usually punished by a fine and/or no more than 90 days in jail) and at least five years have passed since the time of any criminal proceedings
2) A person is at least 70 years old and ten or more years have passed since the time of any criminal proceedings, or
the subject of the record has been dead for at least three years.
(18 Pa. C.S.A. § 9122.)
The only option available to your husband therefore, would be to seek a pardon from the Governor of Pennsylvania. You can read more about that, and get the application (which has no cost) here:
http://www.bop.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/clemency/19502/pardon/1369271
A pardon is rarely granted; however, if it is granted, constitutes total forgiveness by the state, makes the crime as if it never happened and allows a job applicant to deny he was ever convicted of the crime without worry of any sanction.
I realize this is completely unfair. People make mistakes, they shouldn't be punished forever for it. But I can only tell you what the law says, even where I don't agree with it.
If you have further questions or need additional information, use the REPLY feature and I will assist you. Thank you.