For college students charged with drug possession, the consequences can have far-reaching effects on their academic future and career. Whether they are charged with possession or intent to distribute the extent of the educational damage can be equally severe.
Considering the implications of a conviction
Criminal charges, civil penalties and fines only represent the legal damage from a potential conviction. A student facing criminal charges must consider the effect this can have for their future:
- A criminal conviction can make a student ineligible for receiving federal college loans and other forms of student aid. Depending on if this charge is the first or a subsequent one, the student may be suspended from FAFSA eligibility for a year or longer.
- Many colleges have zero-tolerance policies when it comes to drug possession. The least severe consequences could mean temporary suspension with the ability to return to school the following semester, though in some cases, there are more extended restrictions for enrollment. Some colleges make students sign a code of conduct agreement, which means that expulsion may be a likely outcome.
- For internships, jobs and graduate school opportunities that inquire about an applicant’s prior convictions, the student has the legal obligation to answer truthfully. Background checks will often reveal whether this information was correct or not. Some employers and schools will not consider applicants with criminal convictions, no matter the cause of the charge.
Fighting for a student’s future
High school and college is a time of learning, where students can make mistakes and learn from them. To keep your student from suffering lifelong consequences from a criminal conviction, an attorney experienced in criminal defense can guide you through this process and fight for your student’s future.