What Happens When You Fail to Register as a Sex Offender in Pennsylvania | Worgul, Sarna & Ness, Criminal Defense Attorneys
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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.

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