Law School Discussion

charged with crime

Jennifer Ramirez

Re: charged with crime
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2003, 04:25:39 PM »

How would you address a criminal conviction in your personal statement?  I have a misdemeanor petty larceny (shoplifting) charge on my record when I was 18 (i am now 26)  and is one of the reasons why I am interested in law school.. I know there might be some biases against those w/conviction histories, but I want to address it in a good light (i.e. learning experience, etc.)

Any suggestions???


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Re: charged with crime
« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2003, 06:39:06 AM »
Honestly, I wouldn't put that in my personal statement.  All applications ask for you to indicate whether you were charged with a crime or not and they leave room for explaining and also tell you to use a seperate piece of paper if necessary.  I personally don't see a need for it to go on your personal statement.  Just my opinion.  


Re: charged with crime
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2003, 07:39:54 AM »
I would use it as a personal statement, it would be good and different.  Too many people use thier personal statements to brag about themselves and say why they want to go to law school. You should use this has an oppurtunity to seperate yourself from the pack. I would reccomend that you have the LSAT and GPA to back up that you are a qualified candidate to the law schools you are applying though.  I wrote about how my fiancee called off our wedding two months before for personal was a HUGE shock to me.  Two of the Deans at law schools I was applying to actually told me how much they liked my personal statement and that it made a great impression to read something that not only showed the strong points of a person, but also thier weak points.  Law schools do not want cookie cutter drones, they want real people.  Both of the law schools that told me this were top tier highly competitive schools, and one of them ended up giving me a full ride. So I say go for it!!

Mark M.

Re: charged with crime
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2003, 03:51:39 PM »
I have a similar issue that concerns me on my chances of being accepted to law school to pursue my dream.

On account of waiting for my driving record to arrive by mail, the following statement will be speculation in regards to the exact # of tickets I have received, but no more or no less definitely applies to the range. I have received roughly 10-15 speeding tickets in nine years of having a drivers license. All the tickets were received in Texas, where I live and hope to attend law school in fall 2004.

With an UGPA of 3.16 at Texas A&M University in College Station, and a 156 on the Feb 2003 LSAT, I felt ok with my chances of acceptance to targeted schools. UH (50%), South Texas (95%), Texas Tech (60%), and possibly Baylor only by way of entering in the Spring or Summer which are much less competitive based on 2002 numbers from the official Baylor web site (GPA 3.22/3.76
LSAT 153/157 spring 2002, and GPA 2.93/3.55 LSAT 155/160 for summer 2002).

Since graduating from A&M in December 2001, I have worked for Honeywell International (#70 on Fortune 100 companies ranked by total revenue) as a sales engineer.

The schools I mentioned above, and all schools in Texas for that matter require full disclosure of all violations/tickets received whether or not convicted, and regardless of the ticket being expunged from record or not (exclusion of non-moving violations is allowed by only a few schools in Texas). Some require disclosure on all violations for the past ten years, with three years being the least required. The majority of my tickets were received within the past three years.

Fight your inner urge to perceive the following as an excuse for my speeding, but worth noting is the fact that I spend roughly half my working day in the car on the road, and I also commute 80 miles each day from Beaumont to Houston back to Beaumont.

Having said the above, I would like to ask for advice. Anyone who knows of a school that I would have a chance of being admitted, more so than that of a school in Texas, please help. Any related thoughts or advice is also greatly appreciated. Thank you.

anon anon

Re: charged with crime PLZ LOOK!
« Reply #14 on: July 03, 2003, 03:40:17 PM »
8)Whats up everyone. I have a quick question:

Does your criminal record have a strong outcome on your admittance to law school? I was unaware of this because I have not yet looked at an application (but should start since Im applying for next year).

The situation I am in is that when I was a lot younger, I was charged with a real petty thing, for stealing. But I was never convicted. Will this have any detrimental effect on my admittance? Also, how in depth do law schools look into your past? I am seeing these posts in regards to traffic tickets, but I had no idea that would be a pivotal deciding factor in admittance?

Ok, thanks for your responses!!


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Re: charged with crime
« Reply #15 on: July 07, 2003, 10:37:40 AM »
I only can say honesty is your best answer to all questions on your application.  If you weren't convicted then you have nothing to worry about because unless I'm mistaken it only asks for you to describe crimes in which you were convicted of not arrested for.  Again, check with the individual schools for more accurate info and also how old were you?  If you were a minor than it shouldn't matter because it should be sealed and you should look into making sure that it is.  It's not an automatic process it requires you to tell the courts to seal your juvenile records.  And some applications ask for the past ten years only.  Good luck and keep us informed.


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Re: charged with crime
« Reply #16 on: August 22, 2003, 12:17:37 PM »
I agree that honesty is the best policy.  For petty things there need not be any issue for the bar in that jurisiction.  But certain schools will pull up a flag to a CONVICTED applicant.  Non convivtions and therefore dismissed/expunged issuees and records are just that petty, and should be disregarded when bigger factors like the LSAT and GPA play such a bigger part do well get into a good school good luck!
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Re: charged with crime
« Reply #17 on: April 11, 2004, 10:48:19 PM »
 In NYS a person convicted of a crime {which you were] is entitiled to a Certificate of relief from Civil Disabilities which the NYS Bar  will honor as an official disposition for a conviction.It does exactly what it says.Go to your local court and get info 


Re: charged with crime
« Reply #18 on: April 11, 2004, 11:31:58 PM »
I have had my share of run-ins with the law. I was a pretty crazy undergrad. I have a DWAI (Driving While Ability Impaired) and a Disorderly Conduct, both violations, not misdemeanors, thus I have no criminal record. I have also numerous speeding tickets, failed to stop at a stop sign, 3 no seat-belts, driving while talking on a Cellphone. Yes, i live in NY. However, I disclosed everything when I applied to law school. I am attending Albany Law School next year. So it did not affect me. Furthermore, I am also in the Air Force and have a SECRET security clearance, which is 2nd only to a Top Secret clearance. So to answer your questions, disclose everything!


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Re: charged with crime
« Reply #19 on: April 12, 2004, 07:49:17 AM »
I don't think its the law schools conducting backround checks that you have to worry about, its the state bar.  The state bar completes a thourough backround check and they compare it to your law school application, any discrepencies are questioned.

I have been accepted to 4 of 4 law school so far and I have 5 misdomenors from 5 years ago, so I think your best bet is to disclose everything fully.