Sex crimes are among the most serious offenses a person can be charged with. Perhaps one of the most significant aspects of sex crimes is the requirement to register as a sex offender.
In New Jersey, once a person is sentenced to register as a sex offender, they must continue to register for the rest of their lives. Numerous offenses may make a convicted defendant eligible for registration. In other jurisdictions, less serious offenses require shorter registration periods. In New Jersey, all offenses are eligible for lifetime registration. Even though registration is for life, there might be a way to get off the registry after a certain period of time. Even people who move from another state to New Jersey must register for life.
If you are facing criminal charges related to sex offenses, you should call our Atlantic City sex crimes defense lawyers immediately. We can help you fight your charges and hopefully avoid registration requirements. Call the Law Offices of John J. Zarych at (609) 616-4956.
How Long am I Required to Register as a Sex Offender in New Jersey?
Criminal defendants found guilty of certain sex crimes are required to register on the New Jersey sex offender registry for life. New Jersey is a bit harsher than many other states because there is no expiration date for registration requirements. Many other states classify offenses into different tiers, and less serious tiers might require registration only for a certain number of years. In New Jersey, all offenses eligible for registration come with lifetime requirements.
There are numerous registration requirements when you are convicted of a sexual crime. You must register and re-register each year or multiple times per year. Any time you move to a new town or change your address, you must re-register with local law enforcement. Not only that, but the authorities must be notified of any change of address and any time you travel outside the state.
These requirements can become very taxing after years of being on the registry. Our Atlantic City criminal defense lawyers can help you figure out if you are eligible to be removed from the registry.
Crimes Eligible for the Sex Offender Registry in New Jersey
There are numerous sex offenses listed under N.J.S.A. § 2C:7-2(2)(b) eligible for registration. It is important to review your case with our experienced New Jersey sec crimes defense attorneys because not all sex crimes are considered sex offenses for registration purposes. Crimes that require registration upon conviction include, but are not limited to, the following offenses:
- Aggravated sexual assault
- Sexual assault
- Aggravated criminal sexual contact
- Endangering the welfare of a child
- Luring or enticing
- Criminal restraint
- False imprisonment
It is important to review your charges with an attorney because the penalties for certain charges are different when children are involved. For some charges, registration as a sex offender might only be required if the victim was a minor. For other offenses, registration is always required.
Getting Off the New Jersey Sex Offender Registry
While convicted defendants are required to be on the sex offender registry in New Jersey for life, there is one important exception to this rule. Under N.J.S.A. § 2C:7-2(2)(f), a convicted defendant can petition the New Jersey Superior Court to terminate their registration requirements.
To file this petition, certain requirements must be met. First, you must show that you have not committed any other offense in the last 15 years since you were released from a correctional facility or prison. This is often the hardest requirement to fill because it takes a long time to complete. Not only must you complete your incarceration term, which might be long, but you must have a clean record for the following 15 years.
Second, you have to prove to the court that you are not a threat to the safety of others. The point of the sex offender registry is to keep track of dangerous individuals who may threaten the safety of other people in their community. Even if you satisfy the first requirement of having a clean record for 15 years, the court can deny your petition if they believe you are still dangerous.
Our New Jersey criminal defense attorneys can work with you and hopefully convince the court to terminate your registration requirements. We can point to your clean criminal history as evidence that you are no longer a threat. If you do volunteer work, have a job, or in some way give back to your community, these factors can all help you prove you deserve a second chance.
How Long Do I Have to Register as a Sex Offender if I Move to New Jersey from Another State?
If you were convicted of a sex offense in a different state that does not impose lifelong registration requirements and then move to New Jersey, it is important to understand how your registration requirements change. After moving to New Jersey, you are bound by New Jersey’s laws and statutes regarding the sex offender registry. Even if you are convicted elsewhere, you must register for life as long as you live in New Jersey.
If you are a new resident, you can contact our Egg Harbor criminal defense attorneys about how and where you can register. We can also help you familiarize yourself with the New Jersey sex offender registry laws and whether you are eligible for termination.
There are multiple other requirements you must satisfy when moving from another state. For example, new residents have 10 days from the day they move to New Jersey to register with their local law enforcement agency. Failure to register after relocating may lead to new criminal charges.
Call Our New Jersey Sec Crimes Defense Attorneys
If you were recently charged with a sexual offense and are worried about possible registration requirements, contact our Haddonfield, NJ criminal defense attorneys for help. Call the Law Offices of John J. Zarych at (609) 616-4956 for a free, confidential case review to get started.