Can You Eliminate the PC 290 Lifetime Registration Requirement if Convicted of PC 288?

Pursuant to Penal Code section 290, the “Sex Offender Registration Act,” a person convicted of Penal Code section 288 is required to register in accordance with the Act for the rest of his or her lifetime.

Persons required to register under this Act face difficulty in obtaining employment and housing, and can even suffer additional punishment if they fail to register as proscribed. In addition, these persons are ineligible for many forms of traditional post-conviction relief.

For example, pursuant to Penal Code section 1203.4(b), expungement relief is not available for a person convicted of Penal Code section 288.

As a result of the hardships faced by those required to register, offenders may seek to determine whether they can ever be relieved of the duty to register. For some sex crimes, obtaining a Certificate of Rehabilitation will relieve the person of the duty to register under Section 290 if he or she is no longer in custody, on parole, or on probation. (Penal Code section 290.5(a)(1)). However, a Certificate of Rehabilitation is not available for persons convicted of certain specified sex crimes and does not relieve the duty to register for all sex crimes. (Penal Code section 290.5(a)(2).

Those convicted of Penal Code section 288 offenses are not eligible to petition for a Certificate of Rehabilitation. (Penal Code section 4852.01(c)). Therefore, those offenders are not able to obtain a Certificate of Rehabilitation and are unable to attempt to be relieved of the duty to register through this method.

In order to be relieved of the duty to register under Section 290, a person convicted of a Penal Code section 288 offense will need to obtain a full pardon. A full pardon is obtained from the Governor and the application can be obtained on the Governor’s website.


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