Sex offenders must follow the disclosure requirements in Pennsylvania by registering as a sex offender.
In Pennsylvania, sex offender disclosure requirements apply throughout the entire state. In particular, sex offenders must register in a searchable public database where anyone look them up. The sex offender registration requirements apply when an individual is convicted of a sex crime.
In addition to sex offenders who live within Pennsylvania, sex offenders from out-of-state must register if they move into the Commonwealth. If you have been convicted of a sex offense, then you must understand and abide by your disclosure requirements under the law.
Do Sex Offenders have to Notify their Neighbors?
Due to Megan’s Law, the authorities must inform the public about sex offenders residing in their local area. This is called “community notification.” These state laws enable law enforcement and the public to take necessary precautions when someone convicted of a sexual offense lives nearby. In addition, sex offenders must update changes in employment information and notify the public about any new employer information.
Sex offenders must register when moving to Pennsylvania or changing their address within the state boundaries. Sex offenders must comply with this rule because they face criminal prosecution for failure to follow sex offender registration requirements.
Do Sex Offenders have to Tell their Employers?
Generally, your probation or parole officer can require that you notify your employer of your sex offender status. Importantly, this also applies if you are still in treatment related to your status as a sex offender. If this does not apply to you, then you are typically under no obligation to notify your current employer.
What are the Sex Offender Disclosure Requirements if I am Applying for a Job?
For the most part, employers in Pennsylvania are allowed to ask applicants whether they have any prior criminal convictions. However, companies are not allowed to use sex offender registry information for employment in a discriminatory manner. Most notably, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 impacts hiring decisions by preventing prospective employers from:
- Treating applicants with a similar criminal record differently due to their membership in a protected class (this could include race, national origin, sex, religion, etc.);
- Using information about criminal history in the hiring process if doing so is likely to disproportionately affect a protected group; or
- Gathering criminal history information if doing so will not help the employer decide whether you can be a responsible and safe employee.
Are All Sex Offenders Treated the Same Under the Law?
Pennsylvania law distinguishes between sex offenders and sex offenders who are sexually violent predators. Sexually violent predators are sex offenders convicted of heinous sex crimes who have a mental abnormality or personality disorder that makes them likely to engage in sexual violence against another individual in the future.
The consequences for failing to register as a sex offender can vary. It will depend on whether you are an ordinary sex offender or considered sexually violent. You will be considered sexually violent if you were convicted of attempting, soliciting, conspiring, or engaging in sexual violence against another person.
Additionally, sex offenders who are sexually violent predators face more stringent sex offender registration requirements than sex offenders convicted of non-violent offenses. Non-violent sex offenders may be able to end their registration requirements after 15 years. However, sexually violent predators must register for life.
Kitay Law Offices can help you with your sex offender disclosure and registration questions!
Pennsylvania requires convicted sex offenders to follow certain rules when they are released from prison. These sex offender disclosure requirements include disclosing their status to the public, notifying an employer about their criminal background if it is relevant for that job, and following strict parole guidelines. For help navigating this process, contact a criminal defense lawyer at Kitay Law Offices today!