Crime does not pay—it costs! Committing a crime will cost you more than money and jail time, so it may be worthwhile to educate yourself about the Oregon criminal laws surrounding your case. By learning about the law and collaborating with a criminal defense attorney, you may even be able to reduce the costs of your crime.
Use LawInfo's criminal law articles to help educate yourself about Oregon's laws and how they affect your case. You can learn about the difference between misdemeanors and felonies, intoxicated driving charges and many other state-specific criminal law topics. You can also use LawInfo to connect with an Oregon criminal law attorney in Portland, Salem, Eugene or elsewhere in the state.
A criminal record can impact the rest of your life beyond the sentence you'll serve. You'll find your employment opportunities limited and your finances strained by the numerous legal fees, to name a few consequences. Expunging your criminal record could possibly help to alleviate some of these stresses.
Record expungement (called “setting aside” a criminal record in Oregon) is a process in which a person's criminal record is sealed from public access and the original violations of sealed convictions are, in the eyes of the law, treated as if they never happened. A criminal may petition to have their record expunged three years after completely serving their sentence.
However, certain crimes may or may not be sealed in the process. (See the Oregon Revised Statutes § 137.225 for a complete list.) Crimes that are qualified for expungement include:
Crimes that are disqualified for expungement include:
Every state has its own system of classifying crimes which also identifies the statutory punishments for each classification. Oregon has two main criminal offense classifications, in order of seriousness: felonies and misdemeanors. (See § 161.505 et. al.)
Felonies are defined as crimes that are sentenced to more than one year of imprisonment. While most felony offenses carry their own statutory penalties, they are sub-classified further and each felony class carries its own range of penalties, including:
Misdemeanors are crimes that are sentenced to one year of imprisonment or less. Just like felonies, misdemeanors are also sub-classified and each class carries its own range of penalties, including:
An arrest and conviction can change everything. Fines or time in jail are the immediate concern, but a conviction will also mean a criminal record that can make it harder to find a job and housing for years to come. If you are arrested or learn you are under investigation, the first thing you should do is contact an experienced criminal defense attorney. You can search LawInfo’s legal directory to find a local criminal defense attorney who can protect your rights, lay out your options, and help you determine the best way to proceed with mounting a defense and limiting potential penalties.