What are the Consequences for Felonies in GA?

A felony conviction can cost you more than a hefty fine and your physical freedom. A conviction will be placed on your criminal record, affecting your ability to get professional licensure, obtain suitable housing, and see your children.

If you have been denied an opportunity due to a felony on your record, do not hesitate to contact us. Below, we discuss the consequences of felonies in the Peach State.

Incarceration and Fines

Georgia law defines a felony as “punishable by death, by imprisonment for life, or by imprisonment for more than one year.” A felony conviction in Georgia will most certainly come with at least one year in prison and fines that may reach $100,000.

Unlike other states that classify felonies, Georgia lists penalties for specific crimes, with certain circumstances enhancing the severity of your punishment. For example, malice murder, just referred to as “murder” under Georgia law, is punishable by death, imprisonment for life without parole, or imprisonment for life.

Acquiring Professional Licensure

Certain positions require licensure, and those who apply must complete a background check. Even if your record was expunged or sealed, you must disclose the crime when applying for a professional license, including how you pleaded and your trial verdict.

Ex-convicts may be banned from acquiring or renewing a license if they work as a teacher, health care provider, athletic trainer, engineer, music therapist, etc.

Obtaining Housing

It is difficult for ex-convicts to find a suitable place to live. Landlords usually conduct a background check for rental applicants, which can allow them to see if you have a criminal history. The rental process is competitive, and landlords do not need justification to deny your application, so if you have a criminal record, your housing prospects will be far from promising.

Georgia’s Reentry Partnership Housing (RPH) Program helps individuals who are on parole or probation find affordable housing. In an effort to prevent recidivism, this program assists individuals with rent for six months to allow them to get back on their feet.

Even with the state’s efforts to help ex-convicts, too many applications never make it past the first round due to most landlords’ fear of renting to former offenders.

Visitation Rights

Having a criminal record may cause a court to raise concerns about your child’s safety in your presence. A parent who is charged with a felony may lose their custodial rights.

The nature of certain crimes can impact your ability to see your child. These would include any violent crimes, like sexual assault, domestic violence, or child abuse. If a judge believes that it is not in the best interest of the child to see you, then the court may terminate your parental rights.

Speak with a Cumming, GA, Criminal Defense Lawyer Today

Too many ex-felons are constantly reminded of their crime and denied the opportunity of being given a second chance. If you are being discriminated against based on your criminal record, we want to hear from you. Contact us today online or by calling 866-455-4701 to schedule your initial consultation.