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Going home: It's not that easy for convicted sex offenders

If you are convicted of a crime, you will have to comply with the terms of the resulting sentence. This could include community service, restitution and imprisonment. Once you have fulfilled these conditions, the expectation is that you should be able to move on and try to put that experience behind you.

However, this is far easier said than done, especially for someone convicted of a sex crime in Florida. For people in this position, "moving on" or rebuilding a life after completing the conditions of a conviction can be all but impossible due to the severe and sometimes life-long restrictions placed on a person. For example, if you think you can just move back home after being released from prison, you could be in for some very bad news.

People convicted of sexual offenses can be limited in where they work and live in accordance with the conditions of their release. So if you lived near a school, playground, park or other landmark where children congregate, you likely will not be allowed to move back there. This can be true whether the offense for which you were convicted involved children or not.

Not only can you be prohibited from moving home, you can find it incredibly difficult to secure residency when you are slapped with a sexual offense conviction on your record. A background check by prospective landlords can result in denied housing or seriously inflated pricing.

Unfortunately, people in this situation who are unable to find adequate housing typically wind up right back in jail.

There are some options, like one Florida mobile home park featured in an upcoming documentary. This park and other residencies like it offer housing specifically for sex offenders. However, these options are quite limited, which is very problematic in states like Florida where the number of sex offenders in the state has reportedly doubled.

Difficulty finding a place to live can make it even more difficult to put your life back together after a conviction for a sexual offense. Unfortunately, there are many other obstacles people in this situation will face. This is why it is crucial to work with a criminal defense attorney from the beginning to avoid conviction or minimize exposure to these severe penalties.

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