Most of us know having a criminal record isn’t good news. But could it affect your future prospects? This article will discuss how a criminal record could affect your future.
A criminal conviction is the outcome of a criminal prosecution that has concluded that the defendant is guilty of the crime charged. Having a criminal conviction can affect your life for a very long time. Not all criminal offences will stay on your record forever; this can vary depending on the crime.
Many don’t know the meaning of conspiracy in law, but just being associated in the plan of committing an offence is enough for you to wind up with a criminal conviction. It’s much harder for people trying to live a normal life with criminal convictions on record.
Cautions can be removed from records after a certain amount of time, but convictions are harder to remove and will show up on checks carried out on a person, such as a DBS check. Keep reading to find out how it can affect employment, relationships, travel and more…
One aspect of someone’s life that can be deeply affected by a criminal conviction is employment prospects. Some employers have a legal obligation to file for a DBS check, which would show them any convictions a person may have.
This can be extremely important for employers to know. For example, someone who has a conviction of paedophilia or sexual assault cannot work around children or other vulnerable people in society. If proper checks aren’t carried out, the employers can get in trouble themselves.
There are some sectors that are particularly hard to enter with a criminal conviction, such as law, accounting, healthcare and childcare. Many people will be written off as a candidate for a job, just based on having a conviction.
However, there are still many sectors that would be suitable. If you do get through to interview stages or have a chance to explain to an employer why you think you’d be good for the job despite convictions, then it’s always worth a try and best to be open about it.
Depending on the nature of the crime, you may be restricted on where you can travel to in the world – particularly the US or Australia. Permits can be denied based on the fact you have convictions.
Depending on what type of crime you’ve committed, you may need to notify the authorities of your where abouts before you travel. For example, those who have Sexual Offences on record will have to notify authorities in areas of Europe.
Depending on the nature of the crime, being found guilty could cause issues between you and your family. There could be some serious trust issues caused by your actions even if you plead innocence.
It can take a long time to rebuild trust with your friends and family; you may have lost many relationships after your conviction which can be difficult to rebuild after. If you have young children in your family, you may be forced to stay away from them following any Sexual Offences.
Not only this, but being in prison can change a person’s mentality. You could come out of prison finding it hard to reconnect with people generally, feeling judged and conscious of your mistakes. There are plenty of accounts online that describe how difficult people find life after prison.
Applying for a mortgage, or even just to rent, will require a person to have a DBS check. This will show up any convictions a person has. Many landlords won’t rent to people with convictions; therefore, many offenders will find it difficult to find housing after prison.
As a result of landlords turning people with convictions down, many end up in poor areas feeling they have to accept to live in poor housing situations. Due to lack of available housing for ex-offenders, there is an issue with many coming out of prison and having nowhere to go at all. Many end up back with family or friends, if possible, but this isn’t a long-term solution usually.
Over 35% of offenders released in the UK in 2019 were released without permanent settlement arranged. Many end up homeless and, as a result, will often re-offend.
Many schools, colleges and universities will have their own set of standards that they expect students to uphold. Therefore, people with convictions may find it difficult to be accepted into a lot of educational institutions.
Certain convictions may prohibit some ex-offenders into schools to begin with. However, there is a lot of support from charities to help those with convictions in finding educational opportunities after having a conviction due to its difficult nature.
Getting insurance when one has convictions can also be problematic for a lot of people. Those with convictions should read the fine print of any policy before signing anything, ensuring to disclose any information necessary.
People with convictions may be denied certain types of insurance policies or face higher premiums. If a person fails to disclose conviction information, it could result in charges for insurance fraud, should you try to claim a benefit from its policy.
Those with convictions for driving offences or for fraud could find it particularly hard in this area.
As you can tell from this article, there are a lot of aspects in a person’s life that can become affected with criminal convictions. Perhaps most importantly it creates trust barriers between the family and the offender and, therefore, affects the support network needed for people leaving prison.
It’s important for those who are struggling with life after prison to reach out to appropriate charities to help them find housing, jobs, and education opportunities in order to minimise chances of re-offending.