If I am Convicted of a Sex Crime, Will I Have to Move?

A sex crime is any act that involves the sexual exploitation of another person. This can involve anything from rape and assault to indecent exposure and pornography to incest to sex and lewd acts with a minor. Sex crimes can be committed against people of any age, race, or gender, and they can have serious consequences for the victim. 

In Tennessee, various sex crimes are defined and punished by law. Each sex crime has its own specific penalties, which can vary depending on the severity of the offense. In addition to criminal prosecution, victims of sex crimes may also be eligible for victim compensation programs.

You may also wonder, if you have been convicted of a sex crime, do you also have to move? 


What are the Residence Consequences of a Sex Crime Conviction in Tennessee?

If you are convicted of a sex crime in Tennessee, you may be required to move, even if you have served a possible jail term. This is based on the state’s Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA), which was passed in 2006. Under this act, anyone who is convicted of a sex crime must register with the state and must provide certain information to the authorities. This information includes your name, address, and other contact information. You will also be required to update this information periodically.

If you do not comply with these requirements, you may face criminal penalties such as a felony conviction and possible imprisonment. You may also be subject to civil sanctions, such as having your driver’s license or registration suspended.

However, while registering as a sex offender is mostly compulsory, there are some exemptions to the residence requirements. They are:

  • In Tennessee, no sexual offender must have a dwelling that is less than 1,000 feet from the boundary of any school, public park, or playground. This policy helps to ensure that these areas are safe for children to visit. The law also makes sure that sexual offenders are not living close to places where they could potentially harm other people. So, if your former residence is over 1,000 feet from any of these places, you do not need to move.
  • Individuals who have been convicted of a sex offense will not be permitted to live within 1,000 feet of the residence of a previous victim or the victim’s relatives in Tennessee. This law was made in an effort to protect the safety and well-being of both victims and their families. The new law takes effect immediately after a person is convicted of a sex crime, and violators will face fines and possible jail time. Also in this case, if your former residence is over 1,000 feet from any of these places, you do not need to move.
  • In Tennessee, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a sexual offense to live with a child, except if the child is their own. This law was put into place to protect children from being harmed by those who might do harm to them. However, you cannot live with your own child if:
    • You have had your parental rights terminated by a court of law;
    • if the child (minor or adult) was the victim of your sex crime.


Tennessee’s Sex Offender Registry

Tennessee, like other states in the USA, maintains an online registry of sex offenders. The registry includes the names, photographs, and other identifying information of convicted sex offenders. What you need to know about Tennessee’s sex offender registry: 

  • You need to be aware that the registry is public information. Anyone can access it online or through the state’s Department of Safety and Homeland Security, or via the Tennessee Sex Offender Registry website
  • The registry is searchable by name or partial name. 
  • If you are subject to a court order protecting your identity, then the Registry will not release your information. 
  • You have the right to have an attorney request that the Registry remove your name from its list if you have completed all requirements of your sentence, including any required sexual predator registration period(s).


What is the Process for Registering as a Sex Offender in Tennessee?

There are a few different steps that need to be completed to become a registered sex offender in Tennessee. The first step is to contact the local law enforcement agency and provide them with your name, date of birth, and residence information. They will then create a registry for you and keep track of any changes to your address or contact information. 

You will also be required to update your registration within 48 hours of getting a new job or changing your primary or secondary residence. You also need to do so if you have been released on probation or any alternative to jail or if you plan to attend any type of educational institute.


Can I Expunge or Seal My Sex Offender Registry Record?

In Tennessee, individuals who have been convicted of a sex offense can have an attorney petition to have their record expunged or sealed if they’ve been on the sex offender register for at least five years, and it’s been ten years since their conviction. In this case, the court may order the record to be sealed as the individual has demonstrated that they are no longer a danger to society. 

You can also have your sex offender records removed if:

  • The court has reversed your conviction;
  • You changed your guilty plea to a not guilty plea;
  • Your conviction on the sex offense has been expunged in another state;
  • The state has approved your post-conviction relief request.
  • You were convicted as a juvenile, you are now 25 years old, and you have not committed any crimes since your prior conviction.

For more information about how to request an expungement or seal for the Tennessee sex offender registry, please contact our office.


Speak to a Tennessee Sex Crimes Attorney

In conclusion, if you are convicted of a sex crime, it is important to understand your rights and what will happen to you. Depending on where you live, you may have to move or stay in the same location. If you are worried about your future and need help understanding your rights, reach out to an attorney at 615-NASH-LAW. We will be happy to discuss the best possible outcome for your specific case and ensure that you have the best possible chance to avoid any criminal penalties.

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