Massachusetts Residents Gearing Up for Huge CORI Change
The Massachusetts Criminal Offender Record Information system is undergoing sweeping changes in 2012.
May 13, 2012 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Back in 2010, the Massachusetts legislature realized that their system of handling the dissemination of the information contained on a person's criminal record needed an overhaul. The changes essentially rebuilt the entire Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) system, and they touch upon every use for the information contained on a criminal record, everything from job applications to buying a new home.
The new CORI laws will also make it easier for those with a criminal record to correct improper information contained therein and it streamlines the process for someone seeking to seal information contained on their record. As an example, where before a person with a felony conviction on their record had to wait 15 years before beginning the process of having the record sealed (misdemeanors could only be sealed after a 10-year wait), the new law lowers the waiting time by a full five years, allowing people to apply to seal the evidence of a felony conviction from public view after 10 years and a misdemeanor after five. There still isn't a guarantee that the record will be sealed, but giving people the opportunity to apply five years sooner can have a huge impact on their lives.
Perhaps most importantly, though, -- from the perspective of some legal rights activists like those at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), anyway -- the revised statutes will make it harder for potential (or current) employers to make adverse hiring, firing, denial of benefits or promotional decisions without disclosing that those choices were based upon an applicant's criminal record. Employers will now have to not only inform a prospective applicant that he or she was denied an opportunity based on information found in a criminal record, but also must provide to the denied applicant what precise information was used to make the determination.
When Are the Changes Coming?
While some of the changes went into effect at the time the law was passed in 2010, the great majority of the changes will be going into effect on May 4, 2012. To the layperson, it may seem like there was no reason for the delay, but the gap was necessary to allow employers, mortgage lenders and educational institutions -- the businesses most likely to take criminal record information into account when making decisions that could affect an applicant -- to make internal arrangements and adjustments necessary to ensure that they were compliant with the new legal standards.
Even though Massachusetts' CORI law changes are extensive and they make it easier for people to live even though they have a criminal record, the best defense against having information on your criminal record used against you is to prevent a conviction in the first place; working with a skilled criminal defense attorney to fight the charges against you can help improve your chances.
Article provided by Milligan Coughlin LLC
Visit us at www.milligancoughlin.com/
Press release service and press release distribution provided by http://www.24-7pressrelease.com