What Happens When You Fail to Register as a Sex Offender in Pennsylvania
Even after you serve your time for a sex offense conviction in Pennsylvania, there are reporting requirements under state law. If you fail to register as a sex offender, whether due to a mistake or other circumstances, the consequences are severe. Non-compliance with the registration statute is itself a crime, separate from the underlying offense. You face incarceration, fines, and other penalties, so it is critical to retain an experienced Pittsburgh sex crime lawyer.
Regardless of being charged with a sex crime, you still have rights throughout the legal process. The legal team at Worgul, Sarna & Ness, Criminal Defense Attorneys, LLC will protect these rights by developing a solid strategy to fight the allegations against you. Contact us today at (412) 281-2146 to schedule a free consultation.
Pennsylvania Laws on Registration Requirements
Under the Adam Walsh Act, you must provide the following information to law enforcement officials if you have been convicted of a sex offense in Pennsylvania:
- Your name, address, and phone number
- Employment and professional information
- Vehicle details and license plate
- Email address, online profiles, and related information
- Additional details as designated by law
If you committed a Tier I crime, you must register once a year for 15 years. If you were convicted of a Tier II offense, you’re required to register twice a year for 25 years. If you committed a Tier III crime, you must register four times per year for the rest of your life.
Violations of Pennsylvania’s Registration Laws
You could be charged with a crime for not complying with the legal requirements of sex offender registration, but a prosecutor must prove certain elements beyond a reasonable doubt. To obtain a conviction, the state must show that:
- You did not initially register with the Pennsylvania State Police in the county where you were convicted, live, go to school, or work
- You provided false or misleading information while complying with the registration requirements
- You knowingly failed to verify your registration details on an ongoing basis
Criminal Penalties if You Fail to Register as a Sex Offender
If you are convicted of failure to register, the penalties depend on the circumstances of the underlying offense. If you fail to register as a Tier I offender, you may be convicted of a felony in the third degree, which is punishable by up to seven years’ incarceration. If you failure to register as a Tier I or II sex offender, you face second-degree felony charges. As such, a judge may sentence you up to 10 years’ imprisonment.
Note that these are the criminal penalties for failure to register as a first offense. Subsequent violations could mean longer terms of incarceration.
Discuss Your Case with a Skilled Pittsburgh Sex Crime Lawyer
Considering the harsh penalties of failing to register as a sex offender, you can rely on the knowledgeable lawyers at Worgul, Sarna & Ness, Criminal Defense Attorneys, LLC to advocate on your behalf throughout the criminal process. If you have questions or would like to schedule a free consultation, call us today at (412) 281-2146, or visit our website to fill out our contact form.