Megan’s Law: Compliance and petition for relief
The Sexual Offender Act of 1994 is more commonly known as “Megan’s Law” is the source of many complications for clients. According to a workers compensation attorney, your client may have the designation of a sex offender due to anything from dating someone one year younger than their age when they were of age of consent, to being involved in a substance fueled event. The limitations and expirations on the registration and restrictions on Megan’s Law are not standard, which means you may be able to petition for relief on your client’s behalf. Contact your nearest criminal defense attorney.
Petitioning the court for relief
There are many ways to petition the court for relief from the restrictions found in Megan’s Law. The most common is proving that the area that your client may be forced to live and look for work in constitutes cruel and unusual punishment, or is discriminatory. Many towns have tried to restrict offenders to areas that have no resources to support rehabilitation. As long as you can prove that your client has been in compliance, you have grounds for relief.
Making sure clients are in compliance
You can’t do anything about the compliance of someone who is not your client, but once they are you need to make sure they are in compliance with the law to the best of their ability. You can petition the court for amnesty, or make a plea arrangement that may not be related to the actual matter at hand in order to allow your client to move into compliance without winding up in jail too.
What to do when they are not?
Life can get complicated if you have a client who you have knowledge that they have violated the requirements of the law. If they have not registered, or have registered but live and work in an area that is restricted – you may be liable for reporting. When in doubt always consult a criminal defense attorney and make sure that you are up-to-date with the jurisdiction requirements in the area. If they are a Level III offender you may not be protected by privilege.
Understanding the zones in your coverage area
One thing that will serve you well is to make sure that you have a clear understanding of the zones in your area. You don’t have to have them memorized but it should be a paralegals on-going assignment to keep a file that updates areas covered by your license that fall under the restrictions originating with Megan’s Law. Having this on hand will help reduce the amount of time you need to do research to assess whether or not there are grounds for a violation.