Collateral Consequences: The Side-Effects of Criminal Convictions

Often people plead guilty to a criminal charge to “get it over with”, save time, or money. Most of us know that the direct results of a criminal conviction might range from fines to imprisonment. The indirect/side effects are less known. A criminal conviction can have far reaching consequences in the other areas of your life. For instance, a criminal conviction can block a job opportunity, disqualify you from voting, stop certain benefits, or make you ineligible for public office. Before pleading guilty, or risking a conviction at trial, it is important to understand the side effects of a criminal conviction.

Ohio has an on-line compilation of collateral consequences, prepared under the auspices of the Ohio Justice and Policy Center and the State Office of the Public Defender. See Civil Impacts of Criminal Convictions under Ohio Law, available at

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