A criminal record can affect a person's life in many ways. We know this to be particularly true when it comes to job searches and housing. But it can affect family life as well. The ways it can affect family life are both direct and indirect. That's why, in part, Bryan Jones works hard to put forth the best defense for his clients.
Bryan J. Jones, an experienced and trusted criminal defense attorney based out of Charlottesville, aims to get the charges dismissed or to win an acquittal at trial. But if those options are not viable given the evidence against you, a plea deal may be in your best interests to minimize the impact of a conviction.
Here, we provide an overview of how a criminal record can potentially cause problems for you and your family. If you have been charged with a criminal offense in Virginia and want to fight it to protect both yourself and your family, contact Bryan J. Jones today.
The impact a criminal record can have on the convicted person's family life is extensive. The first impact is immediate while other impacts materialize over time.
The immediate impact is clear and real if the sentence involves incarceration, fines, and even probation. Time away from home, contributing financially (and even the impact of the fine can affect a family on a tight budget), and/or being restricted on what he or she can do – all of these things can take their toll on a family.
Worse yet is if your driving privileges have been suspended or revoked. Though you may be eligible for a restricted license to go to work or school, your movement is severely limited: you can't take any children to their friends' homes; you can't stop at Target to get a toy; you can't take any extra yet normal trips to the store or any other place a family would go (unless another person drives, of course).
The long-term impact of a criminal record on the family is serious, but it all depends on the actual crime and the extent of the criminal record.
For example, a one-time DUI conviction may not be very consequential, but three DUI convictions will be. In the first scenario, there's not a pattern of alcohol consumption that would be indicative of a problem, but when you have three convictions, your criminal record may indicate a substance abuse issue. If you are fighting for custody of a child, that criminal record with multiple DUIs can impact your ability to obtain custody – chances are visitation will be restricted.
The long-term and direct impact that a criminal record can have on a person's family is the demise of the family. A criminal conviction can cause a lot of problems that can lead to the dissolution of a marriage and a fight for child custody that may prove difficult for the parent with the criminal record. And without child custody, building and maintaining a strong relationship with the child is harder (though still manageable).
The long-term but indirect consequences of a criminal record on the family include things like:
roadblocks to obtaining good housing in safe environments;
potential challenges to obtaining loans, whether it's for a personal loan, auto loan, educational loan, or mortgage;
potential challenges to a professional career; and, among others,
problems traveling to other places, like Canada.
The long-term, indirect consequences are those that affect one area of your life that then has a strong impact on your family life. Without good housing, a child could be at risk. Without the ability to obtain a security clearance or a professional license (e.g., commercial driver's license), livelihoods could be at risk, which then puts the family at risk of financial security. Then, there's the impact of the social stigma alone and how society treats you and, as an extension of that, treats your family.
Not all criminal records will plague you and your family for the rest of your life. In fact, in some cases, you may be able to get your convictions expunged, and that means no one will have access to or knowledge of the conviction.
If you have been charged with any one of these crimes or another related crime in Virginia and are worried about the impact it may have on your family (as well as you), you need a criminal defense lawyer who can deliver the best outcome for your unique situation.
Bryan J. Jones understands the real impact of a conviction and subsequent criminal record. He also values each client's constitutional right to a defense. Bryan J. Jones endeavors to provide a defense strategy that works for you and your family and no one else.
Contact Bryan J. Jones, LLC either online or call today.