News Release

Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions: Law, Policy and Practice Offers Roadmap to the Restoration of Rights After Conviction

Washington, DC (February 21, 2013) – The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ NACDL Press and Thomson Reuters Westlaw today announce the release of the second book of their joint publishing venture, Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions: Law, Policy and Practice by Margaret Colgate Love, Jenny Roberts, and Cecelia Klingele. This volume is a comprehensive resource for practicing civil and criminal lawyers, judges and policymakers on the legal restrictions and penalties that result from a criminal conviction over and above the court-imposed sentence.

One in four Americans now have some sort of criminal record, and the collateral consequences of conviction have become more severe and harder to mitigate. Criminal practitioners and courts consider them as part of the criminal case in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Padilla v. Kentucky. Most civil practice areas – including employment, housing, and public contracts law – now involve conviction-related restrictions and disqualifications as well. This resource helps civil and criminal attorneys advise clients facing prosecution, clients who have an existing criminal record, and clients whose business interests are affected. It also serves as a comprehensive guide to policy makers, advocates, and corrections professionals.

Of this important new text, NACDL Executive Director Norman L. Reimer said “Simply put, this book is a treasure trove for the modern defense lawyer. But if there is to be any measure of fairness in our justice system, this book should be placed prominently on the desk of every prosecutor and every judge, as well as civil practitioners who are seeking to restore the rights of formerly convicted persons. For the millions who have suffered a criminal conviction, this book may provide a pathway to the full restoration of their rights.”

Topics covered in the text include: (i) various types of collateral consequences, (ii) civil and criminal practice issues, (iii) constitutional and statutory challenges, (iv) access to and use of criminal records, (v) regulation of employment and licensing, and (vi) restoration of rights after conviction. State-by-state summaries and comparison charts regarding consequences, pardon and restoration are included for quick reference.

In addition to and complementing the text, NACDL’s publicly available Restoration of Rights Project launched last October offers a collection of individual downloadable documents that profile the law and practice in each U.S. jurisdiction relating to relief from the numerous civil rights and other consequences of criminal conviction. This section of NACDL’s online Resource Center houses Margaret Colgate Love’s comprehensive work on this topic in a user-friendly format and is available here.

Praise for the Text: 

  • “This impressive volume proposes practical ways to roll back the millstone of invisible punishment that keeps millions of Americans in a state of diminished citizenship. In the name of justice, let the reform movement begin.” – Jeremy Travis, President, John Jay College of Criminal Justice and author of But They All Come Back: Facing the Challenges of Prisoner Reentry 
  • “This important book documents the many ways in which the tangled web of conviction-related consequences creates and sustains a caste-like system that disproportionately affects people of color.” – Michelle Alexander, professor at Ohio State Moritz College of Law and author of The New Jim Crow 
  • “Any prosecutor who is committed to justice must have this book. It identifies the consequences for a prosecutor to consider when charging or plea bargaining, and will help confirm or discount claims of an egregious result of a conviction.” – Robert M.A. Johnson, long-time elected prosecutor and past president of the National District Attorneys Association 
  • “An extremely important contribution to an issue that desperately needs more attention. Millions of lives have been turned upside down by our expansive criminal justice system and the often unintended and frequently unjust collateral consequences of conviction.” – Bryan Stevenson, Executive Director, Equal Justice Initiative, professor at New York University School of Law 
  • “This book will be a definitive resource for legal aid practitioners, public defenders and any other attorney who represents an individual who has (or faces) a criminal conviction. Keep it on your desk and refer to it often!” – Jo-Ann Wallace, President & CEO, National Legal Aid & Defender Association 

The text is available for purchase here.  

A link to a short video about the text featuring the authors is available here.  

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About the Authors 

Margaret Colgate Love practices law in Washington D.C., specializing in executive clemency and restoration of rights, sentencing and corrections. She has been a member of NACDL since leaving the U.S. Justice Department in 1997, where she served in the Office of Legal Counsel, as Associate Deputy Attorney General, and as U.S. Pardon Attorney. She directs the ABA National Inventory of Collateral Consequences of Conviction, serves as NLADA liaison to the ABA Criminal Justice Standards Committee, and is a member of NACDL’s Task Force on Restoration of Rights and Status after Conviction. She chaired the drafting task force for the ABA Criminal Justice Standards on Collateral Sanctions and Discretionary Disqualification of Convicted Persons, participated in drafting the Uniform Collateral Consequences of Conviction Act, and currently serves as an Advisor to the Model Penal Code: Sentencing revision. She has written extensively on the presidential pardon power, on sentencing and corrections policy, and on collateral consequences, including the volume on state relief mechanisms that was the genesis of this project. 

Jenny Roberts is Professor of Law at the Washington College of Law at American University where she co-directs the Criminal Justice Clinic and teaches Advanced Criminal Procedure: Plea Bargaining. Her research focuses on the regulation of actors in the criminal justice system through constitutional law, statute, rules of professional responsibility, professional standards, and culture. She is Vice President of the Clinical Legal Education Association, the nation’s largest association of law teachers, and a member of the board of the Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project. She serves as the Reporter for NACDL’s Task Force on Restoration of Rights and Status after Conviction. Professor Roberts previously taught at Syracuse University, where she directed the Criminal Defense Clinic, and in NYU’s Lawyering program. Prior to teaching, she was a Senior Research Fellow at NYU Law School’s Center for Research in Crime & Justice, a public defender in Manhattan, and a law clerk in the Southern District of New York. 

Cecelia Klingele is Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin Law School, where she teaches courses in criminal law, criminal justice administration, constitutional criminal procedure, and sentencing and corrections. Her research focuses on sentencing and correctional policy. She is Associate Reporter for the Model Penal Code: Sentencing revision, and has served as chair of the Academic Committee of the American Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section, and as a member of the ABA’s Committee on Corrections. Prior to teaching, she clerked in the Western District of Wisconsin, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, and on the United States Supreme Court. 

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The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is the preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's many thousands of direct members in 28 countries – and 90 state, provincial and local affiliate organizations totaling up to 40,000 attorneys – include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal legal system.