September 27, 2018
If you have a criminal record in Texas, your life will be harder in all kinds of ways.
In this post, we’re going to explain why a criminal record makes life more difficult, as well as how having your record expunged can restore your peace of mind and get you back on the right track – and why you want the help of a skilled Fort Worth criminal lawyer.
Why Life Is Harder with a Texas Criminal Record
A criminal record makes life much more difficult for many reasons. Even a misdemeanor conviction can make your life more challenging. These are the biggest ways that criminal records impact people in negative ways.
Your Housing Opportunities May Be Limited
If you are looking for a rental property, your landlord can discover your criminal record through a background check. Many landlords do not accept renters with criminal records. Those that do may charge higher deposits or monthly rates to allow you to stay.
If you are trying to purchase a home, you may not qualify for a reasonable rate and thereby be prevented from getting the house you really want.
Your Employment Opportunities May Suffer
When you apply for a job, many companies will run a background check on you. You could be immediately disqualified from the job of your dreams due to your criminal record.
Even if you are allowed to keep your position after it is discovered that you have a criminal record, your job could be at risk if the company leadership changes. A new manager can run a background check on you and fire or demote you if your record becomes known.
Keep in mind that it’s not just about convictions, either – even if you were only arrested and later let go, that interaction with the police goes on your record.
You May Not Qualify for Licensing
Some jobs require special licensing, such as teaching or commercial vehicle driving. Unfortunately, those with prior convictions are not allowed to take the tests to become licensed, which may inhibit your job prospects.
Your Credit Can Suffer
If you have a criminal record, your credit may have taken a hit while you were incarcerated. This can make it harder for you to get loans in the future.
You May Lose Certain Rights
Convictions for some crimes cause you to lose your right to bear arms or vote. If you enjoy hunting or participating in the political process, you cannot do so with a conviction on your record. You also lose your right to adopt a child when you have a criminal record.
These consequences can take a serious toll on your quality of life. Fortunately, it may be possible to get your record expunged in Texas so that only a select few people and organizations will be able to access it.
The Importance of Expungement in Texas
You know all those negative consequences of having a criminal record we just mentioned? How would you like to avoid them?
That’s what can happen if you get your record expunged. You should be able to:
- Qualify for better housing
- Find more rewarding employment situations
- Secure loans for housing, vehicles or education
- Enjoy the restoration of your basic freedoms
Why doesn’t everyone do this?
Because they can’t. Only certain crimes and people in specific situations qualify to have their record sealed or expunged.
How do you know if you qualify? The best way to learn for sure is to consult with a Texas defense attorney. He or she will not only know if you are eligible, but also be able to explain what is involved in the process of wiping your slate clean, including how long the process will take.
Don’t wait too long, though. Every second you delay is another moment of your life that you’re not going to get back, and you might not even realize all of the different ways that you criminal record is preventing you from moving forward.
About the Author:
Jeff Hampton has been practicing law in Texas in 2005, first in the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office as a prosecutor, and now as a private attorney with the Hampton Eppes Law Group, protecting the rights of Texans who have suffered injury due to negligence or are facing criminal charges. His success in helping people with their legal troubles has been recognized by clients and peers alike, with a Top Attorney designation and 10/10 Superb Rating on Avvo, and a place on the National Trial Lawyers list of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers.