You're convicted of a crime, and you get a relatively short sentence. You serve it and you get back out. You're ready to put the whole thing behind you and start your life over again.

While your outlook may be healthy and positive, you may find it far harder to land a job and start building up the life you want for yourself than you realized. Experts note that a conviction can stay on your record and make it hard to get a job indefinitely.

Problematic Professions

Some professions make it harder than others. For instance, if you need to carry a gun while working as a security guard, that could be impossible if you have a felony and aren't allowed to have a gun. Even if you are legally allowed to have one, employers may be more skeptical. Other licenses, like commercial driver's licenses, can also be harder to get, depending on the type of conviction you have.

Working Against You

Of course, being convicted of a crime doesn't mean you can't be employed. That being said, it may still work against you. Employers can take it into account when deciding whom to hire. If they're looking at two equal candidates who would both be great at the job, both with the same education and experience, they may choose the one without a record over the one with a record.

Your Options

There are two important things to note here. First, information that has been taken off of your record won't be seen by an employer. So, if you were arrested but then found not guilty or if the charges were dropped, it shouldn't show up. You may also be able to have your record expunged, and some juvenile crimes shouldn't show up.

Second, you can see just how important it is to know all of your legal defense options whenever you're accused of a crime. A conviction can hang around and hold you back from the life you want. Understand your rights and defense options before that conviction is made.