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Author Topic: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"  (Read 4414 times)

Bowie

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"Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« on: October 08, 2007, 02:42:48 PM »
As I begin filling out applications I noticed that every single one asks a variation of the question above. Some ask ONLY if you have been convicted of a crime other than a traffic violation, others ask if you have been arrested or charged, regardless of whether you were convicted or your record was expunged. A few years ago, I was arrested and charged with a DUI and possession of a small amount of marijuana. The case was thrown out, I was not convicted, and the arrest is not on my record, however, in the case where the appplication asks if I have ever been arrested or charged, I will attach an addendum explaining the situation. How much of an effect will this have on my chances of getting into schools? I'd imagine there are a number of law students who have had a run in with the law before, such as DUI or something similar.

The Dude Abides

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Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2007, 03:02:29 PM »
It should not really matter unless there are numerous instances of the act. People have spoken on this board about friends going to law school with arrests/convictions for DWI, DUI, etc. You'll be fine if you explain what happened in your addendum.

Shark Week

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Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2007, 06:35:11 PM »
I really find it distasteful that they ask about arrests. Anyone can be arrested for anything, basically. If you're not convicted, it shouldn't be their business.
Michigan '11

The Dude Abides

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Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2007, 07:17:49 PM »
I was told that the school needs to know, so you won't have any issue with the state bar examiners. You could be denied entry to sit for the state bar depending on specific situations, such as not explaining any disciplinary violations, arrests, convictions, etc.  The only instances I heard of people really having a tough time with this is explaining any academic integrity issues, i.e., cheating, or stealing. I don't think alcohol and/or drug arrests will hinder your acceptance to school, especially if this was a one time incident.

futurelawstudent2011

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Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2007, 07:30:29 PM »
I think as long as you are disclosing on all the apps that require disclosure, you should be fine... ever better that you don't have a conviction, only an arrest. As another poster indicated, ppl can be arrested for all types of reasons.
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Bowie

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Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2007, 08:20:32 PM »
Do you think I need to explain why the case was thrown out and I wasn't convicted? Or should I just simply say I was arrested, charged, but then it was thrown out and I have no conviction or criminal record. It's weird because some schools only care about convictions, other want arrests and charges as well. One of the schools that only cares about convictions has a much higher rank than the ones that want to know everything. I would think the better the school, the more they want to know about its applicants.

The Dude Abides

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Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2007, 11:19:45 AM »
I wouldn't give them more information than they need to know. State that you were charged with a DUI and the case ended up being dismissed. Spend the rest of the page explaining how the incident made you a better person and talk about what you learned from the experience.

Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2007, 11:33:30 AM »
You'll be fine. Just make sure you explain the incident fully. Also make sure to include the outcome of the charge and all of the details. Those details being the date, county charged, the actual charge, and the fact that it was dropped. I went through this last year. I was told by many schools that as long as the charge wasn't violent or a crime against people, you should be fine.

zar090

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Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2007, 01:59:44 PM »
You'll be fine. Just make sure you explain the incident fully. Also make sure to include the outcome of the charge and all of the details. Those details being the date, county charged, the actual charge, and the fact that it was dropped. I went through this last year. I was told by many schools that as long as the charge wasn't violent or a crime against people, you should be fine.

Where do you get this information?  I was charged with trespassing a few years back.  I contacted a local lawyer, who managed to get the charge dropped.  I certainly don't remember exact dates and such.

Re: "Have you ever been arrested, charged, convicted, etc?"
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2007, 02:06:31 PM »
You can get them from the local courthouse. It's helpful to remember what county you were charged in. Contact the same lawyer who got the charges dropped, he should be able to get the info or my already have it.