If you face minor criminal charges, you may wonder how much of an issue a conviction would be. After all, almost one-third of adults in the U.S. have a criminal record, so it is practically normal.
Society has changed its views on many things. For example, getting a divorce is no longer seen as shameful. Being gay no longer means you cannot marry. Yet, society still has a long way to go in relaxing its attitudes to those with a criminal record.
A criminal record will harm your employment chances
Employers commission a background check when you apply for a job. While an enlightened employer will realize that everyone makes mistakes and people can change, many never bother to go that far. Their subconscious belief that anyone with a conviction is an immoral or dangerous person means they pass over your application without a second glance.
A conviction will prevent you from holding specific posts of authority
While you can stand for Congress with a criminal record, many lesser institutions will not allow you. Some will put it in their rules. Others will just choose another candidate instead.
If charged with a crime, the best way to ensure your future employment prospects remain high is to fight the charge. It will not be straightforward, and the prosecution may try to entice you away from doing so with a plea deal. Yet, accepting their offer means you must plead guilty, guaranteeing yourself a criminal record, regardless of whether you broke the law or not. Examining all the defense options available can help you decide on the best way to protect your future.