Sex Offender Registration Risk Levels
In New York, persons convicted of certain sexual offenses are required to register under the state’s Sex Offender Registration Act, also referred to as “SORA” or “Megan’s Law.” Even if a person was convicted of a sexual offense in another state or in the federal system, he or she may have to register with the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) if he or she lives or works in New York.
Anyone required to register as a sex offender in the state of New York is entitled to a hearing to determine his or her risk level. This hearing is very important and can have a profound impact on a person’s life. Offenders deemed to be a low-risk (Level 1) are not listed on the state’s public Internet registry and have the least number of reporting requirements. If a judge determines the person to be a moderate risk (Level 2) or high-risk (Level 3), he or she will be listed on the state’s Internet registry and may have to report to authorities as often as every 90 days.
The attorneys at Pappalardo & Pappalardo, LLP have extensive experience in litigating sex offender registration. Either by challenging the prosecution’s assessment of points on the Risk Assessment Instrument (RAI) or by demonstrating a downward departure is warranted, Pappalardo & Pappalardo, LLP has helped many clients avoid Level 2 or Level 3 adjudications.
Lowering Your Risk Level
If an offender has been adjudicated a Level 2 or Level 3 offender, not only does he or she have a right to appeal from that determination, but he or she also has the right to petition the court to modify his or her risk level. Once a year, an offender may ask the court to reconsider his or her risk level by presenting evidence demonstrating a lower risk of re-offense. Certain offenders can also petition for relief from the requirement of registration.