When a Sex Offender Comes to Visit: A National Assessment of Travel Restrictions

The present study examines the registration requirements for sex offenders traveling from their resident state to another state for business or pleasure. The author contacted each state’s primary SORN office to obtain the necessary registration requirements for non-resident sex offenders, as well as where and how non-resident sex offenders can obtain this information prior to visiting that state. The findings indicate that registration requirements and residence restrictions vary significantly by state for non-resident registrants. While not surprising given that numerous studies have highlighted that sex offender policies produce unique and severe challenges for all sex offenders in the United States. This study, however, suggests that non-resident sex offender policies are another potential collateral consequences for registrants. Most notably, there is significant variation in the number of days a registered sex offender has to register in any given state when they come to visit for any occasion. Depending on the state or jurisdiction that the registrant is visiting, residence restrictions may also be applicable. As a result of these laws, registrants may feel stymied from visiting another state, which may further delineate prosocial opportunities, including gatherings with family and friends or fulfilling employment obligations. Additionally, states may experience an increased financial burden due to the manpower needed to enforce their state’s non-resident sex offender laws, especially in areas that are known tourist destinations. Future research and policy implications are further discussed. Abstract and Full Paper (html)  |  Full Paper (pdf)

Related posts

Notify of

We welcome a lively discussion with all view points - keeping in mind...


  1. Submissions must be in English
  2. Your submission will be reviewed by one of our volunteer moderators. Moderating decisions may be subjective.
  3. Please keep the tone of your comment civil and courteous. This is a public forum.
  4. Swear words should be starred out such as f*k and s*t and a**
  5. Please avoid the use of derogatory labels.  Always use person-first language.
  6. Please stay on topic - both in terms of the organization in general and this post in particular.
  7. Please refrain from general political statements in (dis)favor of one of the major parties or their representatives.
  8. Please take personal conversations off this forum.
  9. We will not publish any comments advocating for violent or any illegal action.
  10. We cannot connect participants privately - feel free to leave your contact info here. You may want to create a new / free, readily available email address that are not personally identifiable.
  11. Please refrain from copying and pasting repetitive and lengthy amounts of text.
  12. Please do not post in all Caps.
  13. If you wish to link to a serious and relevant media article, legitimate advocacy group or other pertinent web site / document, please provide the full link. No abbreviated / obfuscated links. Posts that include a URL may take considerably longer to be approved.
  14. We suggest to compose lengthy comments in a desktop text editor and copy and paste them into the comment form
  15. We will not publish any posts containing any names not mentioned in the original article.
  16. Please choose a short user name that does not contain links to other web sites or identify real people.  Do not use your real name.
  17. Please do not solicit funds
  18. No discussions about weapons
  19. If you use any abbreviation such as Failure To Register (FTR), Person Forced to Register (PFR) or any others, the first time you use it in a thread, please expand it for new people to better understand.
  20. All commenters are required to provide a real email address where we can contact them.  It will not be displayed on the site.
  21. Please send any input regarding moderation or other website issues via email to moderator [at] all4consolaws [dot] org
  22. We no longer post articles about arrests or accusations, only selected convictions. If your comment contains a link to an arrest or accusation article we will not approve your comment.
  23. If addressing another commenter, please address them by exactly their full display name, do not modify their name. 
ACSOL, including but not limited to its board members and agents, does not provide legal advice on this website.  In addition, ACSOL warns that those who provide comments on this website may or may not be legal professionals on whose advice one can reasonably rely.  

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Wow. Just wow…

It seems all of academia is against the registry. Civil rights orgs are too. Why is this still allowed?

The link no longer works.

It is remarkable that the article states that Megan’s Law was implemented to monitor sex offenders closely due to several high profile assaults and murders. So you are telling me that drug dealers, gang members, mobsters, domestic violence offenders, and mentally ill people haven’t done a few high profile assaults and murders? For that matter We could add police, celebrities, and politicians to the list. How does that stand up in court as constitutional. Why am I being punished for what someone else might have done or could possibly do?

Lots of work to get all the data compiled. (One month and a couple of days.) For us under threat of felony, all data is already old and potentially unusable. This somewhat comprehensive study shows the insanity of our situation. Driving 1 hour to Ill. From Wi. for an extended weekend is now a hardship. Gets harder to remember self-imposed hardship rather than punishment after 20+ years.

No matter how obvious it is concering these laws being a punishment and more in line with nazi germany, people will continue to push them. Sometime ago, the citizens became sheep and could care less what unjust law the government forces on us. The more i read and with each new draconian and inhuman law passed, it makes me believe all of this is for a darker agenda down the path that will result in the death penalty or something else. Call me paranoid, but these laws are straight out of a 1984 style book.

I wonder if he is correct about NY, Penn, Oregon not requiring non residents to register. I’m pretty sure I recall NY to be 10 days

This is insanity. Thank you for compiling this information. It hits the nail on the head!!! If i travel the USA, I will have to do my own research & lots of it.

It’s seems that more sex offender registry laws are taking in effect in regards to traveling, because it’s believed that sex offenders (Registrants) are traveling for the purpose of being involve in some criminal activity involving minors and that they need to be monitored if they are traveling somewhere thinking they will do something bad. However the notion that sex offenders are dangerous and have a high recidivism rate than any other crime is nothing but a logical fallacy that needs to be refuted with courage, because most registrants really want to move on with their lives, stay out of trouble, and travel freely wherever they want unmolested by anyone. The real criminals that are involved in sex trafficking and tourism involving children are not registrants claimed by Chris Smith, because it could be anyone with no criminal record and not on the registry that hasn’t been caught, even politicians could be involved too (including Chris Smith). This is why the IML is unconstitutional and needs to be challenged because it targets only registered citizens in the US (whose conviction involves a minor) that are staying out of trouble but are being casted down as scapegoat to whatever issue there is which probably has nothing to do with preventing sex trafficking and tourism involving children all over the world by using the angel watch center.