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Can a criminal record affect my college applications?

You might not realize the many different ways a criminal conviction can affect your future life options. Consider how certain convictions might affect the college or university applications you are filling out.

After a classmate of a female student at the University of North Carolina in Wilmington killed the young woman in 2004, her family was shocked to discover that the student had a documented history of violence against females. Ultimately they sued, seeking to hold those making the admissions decisions at the university responsible for the caliber of students they admitted.

In the ensuing years, all 16 of the colleges in the state university system started conducting criminal background checks on prospective students with questionable records.

In another example, East Carolina University evaluates each college application, cross-checking for omissions and inconsistent responses in addition to reviewing applicants' disciplinary histories. Responding yes to the below six questions can result in a denial of admission.

-- Were you ever convicted of a crime?

-- Did you enter a plea to any criminal charges of no contest, nolo contendere, an Alford plea or guilty, or was a prosecution deferred or prayers for judgment continued?

-- Are there criminal charges pending right now against you?

-- Did you otherwise accept responsibility for committing a crime?

-- Were you ever on probation, suspended, dismissed, expelled or subjected to disciplinary sanctions by other colleges, schools or universities?

-- If you served in any branches of the military, were you given anything besides an honorable discharge?

As you can see, your educational future could go down in flames before you ever set foot on a university campus if you have a conviction on your record. If you are charged with a crime in North Carolina, mounting a swift and robust defense is vital to your future. We can help you fight back in court against your charges.

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