Massachusetts

Restoration of Rights Project – Massachusetts Profile

Guide to restoration of rights, pardon, sealing & expungement following a Massachusetts criminal conviction


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Related blog posts:

  • New research report: Four Years of Second Chance Reforms, 2013-2016 (2/8/2017) - Introduction Since 2013, almost every state has taken at least some steps to chip away at the negative effects of a criminal record on an individual’s ability to earn a living, access housing, education and public benefits, and otherwise fully participate in civil society.  It has not been an easy task, in part because of the volume and complexity of [...]
  • When collateral consequences drive the sentence: The David Becker case (9/15/2016) - In the wake of the Brock Turner case, a new controversy was ignited in Massachusetts last month when 18-year-old David Becker, a white college-bound athlete, received two years’ probation after pleading guilty to indecent assault of an unconscious woman at a house party.  As in the Turner case, many are outraged by a penalty they regard as too lenient and the result of white [...]
  • NH Supreme Court takes aim at federal felon-in-possession statute (3/13/2015) -   In an important decision for firearms-related collateral consequences, the New Hampshire Supreme Court relied on the Second Amendment to carve out an exception to the so-called federal felon-in-possession statute, declining to follow relevant federal court precedents. At stake is whether state or federal courts have the last word on the scope of the exceptions in 18 U.S.C. 921(a)(20).  In [...]
  • State courts question mandatory lifetime sex offender registration (1/4/2015) - Notwithstanding the Supreme Court’s decisions in Connecticut Department of Public Safety v. Doe, 538 U.S. 1 (2003) and Smith v. Doe, 538 U.S. 84 (2003), state courts are coming to different conclusions under their own constitutions about whether sex offender registration and notification laws constitute punishment for purposes of due process and ex post facto analysis.  The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is the most recent [...]
  • How risky is pardoning? Not as risky as committing uninformed journalism (12/15/2014) - An AP story about the perils of pardoning, picked up by newspapers and media outlets across the country, manages to convey three pieces of misinformation in its very first sentence.  Riffing off a recent high profile pardon application, it begins like this:  “Mark Wahlberg’s plea for a pardon has focused fresh attention on excusing criminal acts – something governors rarely do [...]
  • Collateral consequences and the curious case of Mark Wahlberg (12/6/2014) - Actor-producer Mark Wahlberg has filed an application for pardon with the Governor of Massachusetts, seeking forgiveness for a 25-year old assault conviction that occurred when he was 16 years old.   The “onetime ruffian from Dorchester”  bases his request for pardon on his rehabilitation and contributions to society since his conviction.  He also specifies his desire to avoid certain legal [...]