Some people underestimate the significant financial impact that criminal charges may have on their life now and in the future. The impact is often significant, from the immediate costs of bail to the legal fees and loss of earning potential in the future.
If you understand the potential financial impact of a conviction, you will be better prepared for it.
After being charged with a crime, you may have the option to pay bail and be released from jail until your scheduled trial. If you cannot pay bail, the situation usually results in a worse outcome, which is why most people, and their families, try to cover this cost.
The bad news is that bail is often a big part of someone’s income, and most people don’t have thousands of dollars available to spend. This is one of the methods the justice system uses to shift the financial burden of crimes to the perpetrator’s family.
Criminal convictions can greatly impact your ability to earn money each year. In fact, formerly incarcerated people may see their annual income reduced by 50% or more over their lifetime. Even convicted individuals who avoid jail time can see a significant reduction in their annual earnings.
The amount of time someone serves and the crime committed also impact a person’s earning potential. A misdemeanor conviction can result in some income reductions, while felons with longer sentences will face the most severe pay cuts.
Protecting your rights and financial future
As you can see, being convicted of a crime can result in several financial burdens. Even after someone serves their sentence, they can see a significant financial impact. Knowing your legal rights and options is the best way to avoid a conviction and the damage it may do to your future.