Monday, September 24, 2012

Collateral Consequences Resource

A criminal conviction frequently has consequences far beyond simply paying a fine or incarceration; a conviction can affect not only civic participation and voting rights, but also employment, occupational licensing, immigration, educational opportunities, public assistance, housing and residency, family relationships, and motor vehicle licensing. To help provide information on these far-reaching, and often unexpected, impacts on a defendant's life so that better decisions can be made, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D.Vt.) helped launch an online database that will compile the collateral consequences of a criminal conviction in all U.S. jurisdictions.

The National Inventory of the Collateral Consequences of a Criminal Conviction is available here.

The project is a joint effort by the National Institute of Justice and the American Bar Association. So far, the website includes information for only nine states and federal law. However, Margaret Love, the director, has said that additional information will be made available over the next 18 months.