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TAS Can I Get a Conviction Removed From My Criminal Record?

Discussion in 'Criminal Law Forum' started by Rach.kennedy77, 29 May 2015.

  1. Rach.kennedy77

    Rach.kennedy77 Active Member

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    Several years ago, I signed a false statutory declaration. I was given 2 years good behaviour and it was recorded on my criminal record. That was in 2010. Since then i have received a masters in social work but the criminal history is preventing me from gaining employment. I did have a lawyer at the time but she didnt push for them to not record anything on file.

    Is there any way to have this conviction hidden? I am 39 and besides 2 minor speeding fines have no other criminal history.
     
  2. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

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    Hi Rach.kennedy77,

    Firstly, it is important to understand the reason for having criminal records, whilst you may want to forget about it and move on, employers have a right to know what sort of person you are and what you have done in the past, even the minor offences. Therefore, there is no easy way to simply wipe your slate clean, otherwise the whole system of police records would be compromised.

    However, section 6 of the Tasmanian Annulled Convictions Act 2003 enables minor convictions (which includes any conviction other than a sex offence and or one attracting a prison term of more than 6 months) to be annulled after a good behaviour period of 10 years if you were an adult at the time of the offence. Good behaviour requires that you have no convictions during that time that are punishable by a prison sentence. The rationale for this provision is that offenders should be able to ‘live down’ a past offence (after a period of not re-offending) and should not be subjected to ongoing stigmatisation and discrimination. The affect of the annulment is that (1) you are not required to disclose the annulled conviction to anyone and (2) the annulled conviction is taken not to form part of your official criminal record.

    However there are certain occupations, appointments or licences that you may apply for which are are exempt from the application of the Annulled Convictions Act 2003, meaning that all prior convictions and findings of guilt (including those of a minor nature) will appear on your police record. This is referred to as a "Schedule 1 record."

    I am not aware of any other options for having your record cleared of this offence. Perhaps someone else could shed further light?
     
  3. Rach.kennedy77

    Rach.kennedy77 Active Member

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    Thanks so much for your response, I am in no way trying to shy away from what I have done. I did falsely sign it, but circumstances in the moment were not permitting of any other response. I went back to the police station within 2 hours of making the statement to tell them it was false but they did not care. They even told me i was silly for admitting it as it probscwould not have been followed up anyway.
    If i am unable to have it expunged is it possible to contest it somehow? I paid a lawyer 3500 to represent me and she hardly said a word.
     
  4. Tim W

    Tim W Lawyer

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    If it was "several years ago", then it's probably too late now to appeal the conviction and/or the sentence.

    I agree with @Sophea in that you have few other options.
    Access to the Annulled Convictions provisions depend rather on what the specific charge was
    (ie whether or not was it a "minor conviction" within the meaning of that Act).
     

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