The Tiered Registry Law (formerly Senate Bill 384), passed by the California state legislature four years ago, is now effective. Some of its provisions, however, will not begin until July 1, 2021. The most important of those provisions is the petitioning process for removal from the registry.
“The first step to take in the petitioning process is to go to the law enforcement office where you register and ask for your Tier Assignment letter,” stated ACSOL Executive Director Janice Bellucci. “According to the CA Department of Justice, tier assignment letters will not be sent to registrants, however, they will be available to law enforcement only on a government database.”
Because eligibility for the petitioning process is based upon the tier to which an individual is assigned, an individual’s Tier Assignment letter is critical. Each letter should state whether an individual convicted as an adult has been assigned to Tier 1, which requires a minimum of 10 years of registration, Tier 2, which requires a minimum of 20 years or registration or Tier 3, which requires lifetime registration. Tier assignments can be challenged.
“If a registrant requests a Tier Assignment letter and that request is denied, the registrant can and should contact ACSOL for assistance,” stated Bellucci. “Assistance will be available by phone at (818) 305-5984 or by email at email@example.com (***updated e-mail address – Jan 13***).”
Below this article are links to documents that answer basic questions regarding the Tiered Registry Law, in general, and the petitioning process, in particular. Please note that individuals must wait until the month of their birthday after July 1, 2021, to petition for removal from the registry. As a result, individuals whose birthdays are in January, February, March, April, May and June cannot submit a petition until the month of their birthday in 2022. If they do so, their petitions will be rejected.
“Most registrants will be able to complete their own petition forms,” stated ACSOL President Chance Oberstein. “Soon after the final government petition forms are available, ACSOL will conduct training regarding how to complete a petition form. Individuals who have suffered one or more convictions in addition to a conviction for a sex offense may require legal assistance.”
In a newly issued document, the California Department of Justice (CA DOJ) has announced several clarifications regarding the Tiered Registry Law: (1) tier assignments will not be posted on the Megan’s Law website, (2) a risk score such as a STATIC-99R score is not necessary in order to petition for removal from the registry and (3) individuals may petition for removal even if they do not yet have a tier assignment letter. In addition, the CA DOJ has divided Tier 3 into two subcategories. Individuals assigned to one of the subcategories, based upon risk score only, may petition for removal after a minimum of 20 years while individuals assigned to the other subcategory are required to continue lifetime registration. Below is a link to the newly issued document. Additional documents, including the final form required to petition for removal from the registry, will be linked to this article in the future.
CA DOJ – FAQs – Jan. 2021 [UPDATED 1/5/21]