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Pennsylvania Legislation Attempts to Close Megan's Law Loopholes

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New reporting requirements and stricter penalties enhance Megan's Law to comply with Federal Adam Walsh Act

By Attorney Elisabeth K.H. Pasqualini, Megan's Law Attorney, Harrisburg, PA

Senate Bill 1183 is awaiting the governor's signature and will bring Pennsylvania into compliance with the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006 and close the Megan's Law loopholes will be signed by the governor.

The Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act is a federal law that was developed in order to ensure every state has the same set of comprehensive standards that strengthen the nationwide network of sex offender registration and notification programs.

Senate Bill 1183 addresses reporting requirements for sexual offenders. It updates and replaces Megan's Law and includes very strict reporting requirements under the Adam Walsh Act.  Sexual offenders must report a change not only of address, place of employment and attendance in school, but also change of phone number and change of email address. In addition, sexual offenders must provide the location of any place they will stay when away from their residence for seven or more days and they must provide a 21-day advance notice of international travel. In accordance with the Adam Walsh Act, the bill requires a sexual offender to report in-person at an approved registration site with respect to this information.

This legislation will also change and significantly strengthen Pennsylvania's existing Megan's Law, which will remain in effect for one more year until the more stringent Adam Walsh provisions go into effect. It includes the requirement for sex offenders who are homeless to register every 30 days with the Pennsylvania State Police as transients, and for registration of out-of-state sexual offenders who must register for a lifetime in their home states but subsequently move to Pennsylvania. These provisions were necessary to close loopholes under current law which had been exposed by recent appellate court decisions.

If you are subject to Megan's Law reporting requirements, do not wait until you've failed to comply, contact an experienced attorney at Shaffer & Engle Law Offices, LLC toll free or email us today.

2 Comments

RSO's stand up now to file for injunctions against this insane law. This must be stopped. You can and will be caught 'out of compliance' because it is impossible to keep up with the outrageous requirements. When you are caught, you are looking at a mandatory 4-10 year sentence - just for omitting some minor piece of information. This cannot be Constitutional, but silence is the same thing as giving up your rights! Act now people.

I understand that even if you were sentenced to register for 10 years and completed that sentence five years ago you are getting put back on the web site and required to register for llife, that seems unreal.

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