Court Expands Eligibility for Certificates of Rehabilitation [with CORRECTION]

CORRECTION: The information in the article below is based upon a court document from 2014 that was mistakenly identified as a 2015 appellate court decision. Regrettably, this year’s decision did not expand eligibility, but instead eliminated eligibility for many individuals to apply for a Certificate of Rehabilitation.

A California Court of Appeal issued a decision this week that expands eligibility for registrants to apply for a certificate of rehabilitation. The decision, People v. Tirey, states that a registrant who was convicted of PC 288(a) and who completed parole 13 years ago is eligible to apply for a certificate.

“This is an important decision for many registrants,” stated attorney and CA RSOL vice president Chance Oberstein. “It will significantly expand the number of registrants who can apply for a certificate of rehabilitation.”

In this case, the appellate court clarified that it was not making a decision whether Tirey would obtain a certificate. Instead, that decision is to be made by a trial court.

According to the Court, equal protection principles were violated when Tirey was declared ineligible to apply for a certificate. These principles have the possibility of being applied to convictions for similar sex offenses such as PC 288 and 288.5.

In its decision, the Court rejected all arguments offered by the Attorney General who had requested a rehearing of the original case.

“A certificate of rehabilitation currently is the only realistic method for registered citizens to be removed from the sex offender registry,” stated Oberstein.

The decision to grant a certificate of rehabilitation is a discretionary decision by a state judge who faces re-election. In order to maximize the possibility of obtaining a certificate, registrants must provide the court with a psychological evaluation as well as letters of support.

Judge Thompson disagreed with the court’s ruling and in his dissent stated that the court’s decision “will allow thousands of serious sex offenders to escape their lifetime parole and sex offender registration obligations.”


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This seems like good news for the people in California, Texas has a deregistering process but is limited and then the judge has to agree which has been very difficult to have these judges do. They should just take the judges out and allow a board to decide. Hope this works out for many of you.

Well, I think this is wonderful news, unless you reside in OC. I was arrested almost 20 years ago and eventually plead to a battery charge with Summary Probation. I eventually (on my own) had the charge reduced to a misdemeanor (LA County) and expunged. I eventually filed a COR in OC. I was shocked. The DA was out of control. She had the alleged victim show up/had a letter written by the LA DA (signed by the OC DA) and the list went on and on. Eventually the Judge stated he had no reason to deny the motion, but it wasn’t enough? If you read the statues for a COR in California, I believe it states an Attorney isn’t supposed to charge a fee? I’ve called Chance on one occasion. He sounds truly wonderful, but I was rather shocked by his fee request. Good luck

“Judge Thompson disagreed with the court’s ruling and in his dissent stated that the court’s decision ‘will allow thousands of serious sex offenders to escape their lifetime parole and sex offender registration obligations.'”

This judge is an idiot, and I’m glad this judge was in the minority!!!

This decision will allow thousands of citizens who made a horrible mistake in their distant past the OPPORTUNITY to show a court that they have paid their debt, learned their lesson, and truly changed. It’s called due process. Beyond that, it doesn’t allow or guarantee anything.
To deny a person an opportunity to show they are worthy of s second chance after a certain time period and after successfully completing ALL requirements is absurd and Unamerican.
I’m glad the majority sees differently!

Judge Thompson disagreed with the court’s ruling and in his dissent stated that the court’s decision “will allow thousands of serious sex offenders to escape their lifetime parole and sex offender registration obligations.”

And rightly so.

Hello my crime was for 288a in 1989 so what steps do I take to make this happen for myself and many others u

Mike, delending upon your financial situation, I would either contact the public defenders office or a reputable attorney. There are so many variables. Did you do prison time? County time? Is the offense a Felony or misdemeanor? 1 count? Good luck

I was convicted of PC 288(a) in ’93. There was no parole; seven years probation and county time. When I applied to be removed from the web site in 2007, due to the circumstances of the offense, I was deemed to be ineligible.

I’m not clear on this “a registrant who was convicted of PC 288(a) and who completed parole 13 years ago is eligible to apply for a certificate.”

Does this mean:

a.) 13 years OR MORE
b.) eligible without regard to circumstances.
c.) what is the effect of the statue change two years ago that removed the inequity in the law. (AB1438 passed August 2014)

Can Chance or Janice represent me or someone they would recommend? This is FANTASTIC news!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have a certificate of rehabilitation, now. What I should do next?

Good news for you all. In Cali.

Now Janis and Chance need to work on section 311. How can a touch crime be considered less deviant then a non-touch crime?

I was told that i would never be able to get a Cetificate for my 311.11a conviction.

Oh and Janus/Chance i thank god everyday for all the hard work you do.

I have a single count misdemeanor in OC that I was more than eligible for, timewise, in 2014 I applied for my COR.
The fact that I was never eligible to be put on the Megan’s Law website says that, by mechanism of law, based on my offense, I am NOT considered a danger to the public so there’s no reason to warn them about me by putting me on the web site.

The OC District Attorney opposed the petition making it sound like Phil Garrido or Rodney Alcala. But we are appealing.

The basis of the appeal is, basically, that the judge denied my petition based on me DA’s musings that I did not prove that I was no longer. Even though I was no danger to. Even though I was not considered a danger to begin with.
And not only do they ask for arbitrary things beyond the law, like psychological reports. but then they ask you to prove a negative. Prove you are not going to do something. So yeah if individual the judges make up their individual requirements then nobody could get a certificate.
It’s Alice in Wonderland insane.

What I would like to know is that in the last 10 years of every ESO who applied for a certificate, How many for granted in OC?

I think the whole way they handle this there must be some prosecutorial and or judicial misconduct going on there.

Well, hopefully, my appeal will shed some light on that. But I’m sure they will fight it with every fiber of your being. Especially since the Orange County DA’s office and the DA in particular gotta egg on its face with their Park restriction ordinances recently.
Yeah Tony it was real bullet proof in the courts, like you assured all those cities, wasn’t it?

Will this cover federal felonies, too?

How can there be a way to unregister only for those convicted with crimes at the state level? After all, the state wrote the law that mandates federal felons to register, so they should equally allow them to be able to qualify for unregistering. Can anyone shed some light regarding the legal theory on this?

MichaelRS, good luck. Truly. Please disregard many of the comments or dialogue. Some of the individuals are truly sad cases and try to lash out on others to forget their sorrows. I believe most good Attorneys charge anywhere from $2500 -5K for a COR. Honestly, processing the paperwork is a pretty easy process. I processed my initial COR on my own, but once I became aware of how OC operates, I hired someone to stand in and address the DA. Good luck again

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Good Lord! I really have to stop trying to post semi-long stuff here from my phone.

I just read my post above, from November 15th, and, based on it, I wouldn’t blame anybody else who read it from thinking I didn’t have any more going on upstairs than the main character in the movie Sling Blade.

Sorry y’all had to try to sift through that. I just hope you were able to read around all the grammar errors and typos. I thought I had proof read it effectively before posting, but, obviously, I missed a lot on my phone’s smaller screen.
Maybe later I’ll just rewrite it, so looks more like the Queen’s English, and ask the moderator to delete the original junk.

I have a few questions maybe hopefully somebody could answer. The COR says you need to have done PC 1203.4 first, however, according to this code, it only applies if the person got probation. The person in the court case had prison time and parole, so how was he able to get the PC 1203.4 done?

Also, I had prison time and am currently on parole for 288(a). Will I be able to apply for the COR in the future?

I’m probably losing my mind here (God knows, I’m about due to), but after using the link to the Nov. 10 2015 decision, it certainly seems like this original post is based on the April 25, 2014 Fourth Circuit decision in Tirey II, prior to the enactment of AB 1438. The decision on Nov. 10, 2015 indicates a unanimous three-judge decision that states in view of the passage of AB1438, persons convicted of both, 288.7 AND 288(a) PC are ineligible for Certificates of Rehabilitation. Judge Thompson is included as concurring.

Am I losing it?

SO am I eligible for a certificate of rehab , 1989 no contest plea on a 288[a] no force no violence,,me 18 victim 13???? NO OTHER CONVICTION SINCE THEN

Can anyone tell me if you can get relief if you were convicted of (664/288a attempt) (288.2b distributing harmful material over the internet) and (647.6child molestation) all this from a single internet incident back in 2004 I did 2 1/2 years in prison There was never no nude photos no sex talk hardly at all and never any physical contact

yeah seems a little unequal simply because you did prison time compared to county or probation.

Some go to a supposed to be guaranteed fair open Constitutional court trial to defend oneself to their innocence and challenge charge…(no such thing in california and oc currently under scope of misconduct corrupted withholding evidence)
Pleading guilty to lesser charges is a BIG difference than your trial charge.
Plead guilty to lesser charge can get one NOT in registry.
Over 95% plead guilty to lesser charge than trial charge and probably 98 % registered plead guilty nps …
Your comment they ‘admitted’ is a deceptive and a fraud…If truly what you say then admit guilty to charge facing at a trial… More likely than not…
were lesser charge and may not even come close in description to original trial charge. Maybe nps you could really stand on what you say and put that in the registry what charge facing to trial..Than the lessor charge they pled guilty too..let’s actually see what they admitted too .
Some will go to trial because they are innocent and not take a lesser charge (nonregistered)… That’s Fact.

People should be off this registry I say now after ten years other’ve proven them wrong ..its time for people to be off this listing.
No offense this or that…people need to be off.
The difference between offense is plead guilty to lesser offense..
Difference between someone is registered to not…is plead guilty to lesser offense.
Put that in your ‘packet’.

Can someone please actually clarify what the second sentence of this “CORRECTION” blurb means? ie….. “but instead eliminated eligibility for many individuals to apply for a Certificate of Rehabilitation.”

What exact types of offenses or individual RCs are no longer eligible for a COR??

CORRECTION: The information in the article below is based upon a court document from 2014 that was mistakenly identified as a 2015 appellate court decision. Regrettably, this year’s decision did not expand eligibility, but instead eliminated eligibility for many individuals to apply for a Certificate of Rehabilitation.

Is there any chance for a Certificate of Rehabilitation for my son who had sex with a 16-year-old, she said she was 18 and he was 21 one. This is in New York state. He had a felony and he took a plea was gave him a misdemeanor/misconduct. His lawyer once told me that because he took the plea he can never come back for anything. There was no violence, there was liquor. He went to county jail for 4 months he was on probation for 6 years he went to sex offense classes and finally we went to the probation officer and his supervisor and he was allowed to take his GPS off and then the probation officer and my son’s lawyer went to the sentencing judge and they took him off probation. He is a level one offender. He was never in trouble before and hasn’t been in trouble since. He is working. He got 20 years on the registry he has been on 4.5 years. I really don’t have a real understanding of this Certificate of Rehab. is, any help I can get would be so appreciated.

Just a note to clear up some confusion about this article. First of all, if Tirey was affirmed, it would have made those convicted of PC 288 subsection (a) eligible for a certificate of rehabilitation. Unfortunately, this was not the case. For a bright shiny moment in time we all thought the court did the right thing but it was only a technical glitch. The announcement of the decision was linked to a prior opinion. Later the link was updated with the actual opinion. So to be clear, eligibility for a certificate of rehabilitation was not expanded or contracted, it just remains the same.

Also, there is a common misconception that prison time negates eligibility for a certificate of rehabilitation. It does not. Under PC 4852.01 (b), those who were confined in state prison are also eligible pursuant to other provisions of the code.

I hope this note is helpful.

Chance X. Oberstein

I went to prison for getting it on with two 16 year olds in 2000 (at the same time). I live with both women now (both 31 y.o.) in a hot polygamous relationship of near 10 years now. We sleep on a King bed and they please me every night because they know I paid a high price to have them both. I tried to get one of them certificates but that damn judge said my crimes can’t get it. Now, I think there should be a law where if us sex offenders have our testicles surgically removed, we can be granted a certificate and be taken out as 290 scum. I paid my dues. If I’m willing to get my nuts chopped, then they damn well should take me off this registry!! I think Donald Trump will fix this mess.