Criminal Law

Criminal Law Questions? Ask a Criminal Lawyer.

Ask a Lawyer, Get an Answer ASAP!

Criminal Record Questions

A criminal record is a record of a person's criminal history, usually sought after by potential employers or lenders to determine a person's character. Criminal records will vary from state to state and countries tend to have different limitations as to what can be listed within a criminal record. While many countries allow only criminal convictions to be listed in criminal records, others allow every infraction made by the individual. This could include speeding tickets, DUI's, and petit larceny. Some countries even list charges that have been dismissed or those that are pending. Take a look below at a few of the more commonly asked questions about criminal records.

My son has a criminal record for armed robbery after the fact. He picked someone up that had just robbed a store. His car was not on the lot during the robbery, he just gave the man a ride. His attorney told him to plead guilty and he received three years probation. Now my son cannot get a job. What can be done?

Generally, minor offenses and non-convictions are qualified for expungement, and only when the charges have been dropped. People who have been convicted of major felonies are usually not qualified to have their records expunged. However, you could apply for a pardon, which is basically forgiveness by the state. Your criminal record would still stand as far as back ground checks but a pardon may assist you in gaining employment. A pardon tends to let a potential employer that the person has changed their ways and is trying to better themselves. You should be aware however; most pardons go un- granted.

Another option to consider is if you entered a guilty plea without realizing the complications of the charges when you pled, or was without the assistance of an attorney, you may be able to vacate the plea and conviction. This may help you turn the criminal record around. An attorney can assist you in doing this.

You should check your state laws and see if there is protection for people that have been convicted of a crime. Many states have certain forms of protection for these people that prevent employers from discriminating against a person based on their criminal record. Not all states have this protection so you need to look into your states laws.

Does an informants criminal record affect their credibility in a case?

When making an arrest, the police need nothing more than probable cause. This is the reasonable belief that a crime has possibly been committed and that the person in question may be the one who committed the crime. As far as an arrest is concerned, the police generally don't care about the person reporting the possible crime, having a criminal record. If there is enough reasonable proof, the police will look into the informants claim.

However, in the event that an informant/witness who has a criminal record takes the stand, the informant's credibility may be questioned by the defense. The defense lawyer would attempt to disqualify the reliability of the informant based on his/her criminal record. This puts the prosecutor to task by making a strong case against the defendant in order to prove their guilt without solely relying on the informant's testimony. And in all cases, the judge will tell the jury to use the testimony of the informant when determining the credibility of the prosecutor's witnesses. The answer to the question would be yes in most situations.

Can a person with a criminal record travel to France or Italy with only a passport or do they require addition documentation to enter the country even if it is only for a visit of less than 90 days.

European countries don't deny entry to people with a criminal record for the purpose of tourism. England, France, and Italy allow tourist with past criminal records. You can contact the customs agencies to determine which countries allow such travel. As long as there isn't a probation keeping you from traveling or as long as you have permission to leave the country while on probation, you should be fine.

How do I get a criminal record sealed in North Carolina, and when a record is sealed, what does that mean, in relation to background checks, etc?

Technically, you cannot have a criminal record sealed in NC, but you can have one expunged if you qualify. In order to have a criminal record expunged, you will need to petition the court. In order to do this, you will need to hire a criminal defense lawyer who is familiar with post-conviction issues. If you manage to have your criminal record expunged, when filling out employment applications, you can answer no to questions regarding convictions. However, if an employer is basing your employment off of your ability to pass an FBI back ground check, you will need to divulge any past criminal convictions. The reason for this is because no records are sealed from an FBI back ground check.

Criminal records are a list of offenses complied in a file of individuals who have committed criminal acts. If you have questions regarding criminal records, don't hesitate to contact an Expert.
Please type your question in the field below

4 verified Criminal Lawyers are online now

Criminal Lawyers on JustAnswer are verified through an extensive 8-step process including screening of licenses, certifications, education and/or employment. Learn more



Juris Doctor

5222 positive reviews

Counselor at Law

Juris Doctor

3262 positive reviews


Juris Doctorate

3170 positive reviews
See all Criminal Lawyers