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Sex offenders who have been convicted since Megan’s Law went into effect on October 31, 1994, or who were serving a sentence on the effective date of the law are required to register. Sex offenders who have been found to be repetitive and compulsive by experts and the courts, regardless of the date of conviction, are required to register.
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Sex offenders must fill out a registration form and submit it to their local police department. The form requests personal information of the sex offender, including home address and place of employment. The accuracy of the information on the form is confirmed. This information is kept by the Division of State Police in a Sex Offender Registry.
The offenses requiring registration include:
A juvenile sex offender is a person who commits a sex offense while under the age of 18. Juvenile sex offenders must register like adults.
Sex offenders convicted in another state are required to register within 10 days of moving to New Jersey. In addition, sex offenders convicted in another state are required to register even if they are just attending school or are employed in New Jersey.
Sex offenders are required to report every change of address. Sex offenders must notify the local police at least 10 days prior to the move. In addition, law enforcement agencies will monitor whether sex offenders are reporting change of addresses. Some sex offenders must verify their addresses annually. Others must verify their addresses every 90 days.
All sex offenders subject to Megan’s Law must register for the remainder of their lives. Sex offenders may apply to the court to be removed from the Sex Offender Registry if they committed only one offense, have not committed another offense for 15 years, and prove that they are not likely to pose a threat to the safety of others.
Juvenile sex offenders may also apply to the court to be removed from the Sex Offender Registry if they were under the age of 14 at the time of their offense but are now over the age of 18.
Information is available on the Internet. The law limits the information to be placed on the Internet to all high risk (Tier 3) offenders and some moderate risk (Tier 2) offenders. The law excludes many juvenile sex offenders, except for Tier 3 juvenile sex offenders, most moderate risk offenders whose crimes were committed against members of their families or households, and most moderate sex offenders whose crimes were considered statutory because of age.
Failure to comply is a third degree crime. If you know someone has been convicted of a crime requiring registration, you can always provide that information to the local police or county prosecutor. However, they will not be able to advise you whether or not that particular sex offender is registered.