Realtors Seeking Good Cause Exception
If you’re a realtor in Arizona, chances are you already hold a fingerprint clearance card. It’s also likely you understand keeping one when working with the general public is mandatory. Good cause exception is a way to get the necessary fingerprint clearance card once it’s been denied or revoked, and it is vital in continuing a career in real estate. Realtors seeking good cause exceptions should know the necessary steps for completing the application and what documentation they’ll need.
Purpose of Good Cause Exception
A good cause exception is for helping a person get a fingerprint clearance card even if they have a criminal history, conviction, denial, or suspension of the card. If a realtor or broker qualifies for a good cause exception, they can obtain a fingerprint card.
Applying for a Good Cause Exception
When submitting your application for a good cause exception to the Arizona Board of Nursing, complete it as thoroughly and truthfully as possible. Applicants can find the necessary forms on the Board of Fingerprinting website.
Remember, realtors applying for good cause exceptions can only do so if their card has already been denied or is facing suspension. When completing the application, include the Department of Public Safety’s denial or suspension notice.
Many factors influence how long it takes to get a Good Cause Exception. Usually, the Fingerprinting Board will do a review within 20 days. This review process begins when they receive the criminal records about seven to ten days after receiving the initial application.
Expedited Review for a Good Cause Exception
When the Fingerprinting Board does its expedited review, they will either grant the card to the realtor or broker or schedule a hearing after the review. If there is a hearing, it could mean an additional three or four months to complete the process. To determine which is for the applicant, they must consider if the person is waiting to be tried in court. Or if they have been convicted of any offenses. They also may grant a Good Cause Exception to anyone who appears to be successfully rehabilitated.
Realtors Finding Good Cause Exception
Hiring an attorney to help obtain a Good Cause Exception has proven successful. Clients who receive their fingerprint clearance cards feel much relief as they can move on in their careers. An attorney can help ensure the application is complete, assist with collecting essential documents and write out necessary arguments to show rehabilitation or the worthiness of having a fingerprint card.
Facing fingerprint clearance card denial or suspension can be frustrating and lead to anxiety. Not having a fingerprint clearance card can mean having a job or not. It can mean a future filled with an exciting career or simply doing something to get by. Hiring an attorney can make the entire process much smoother and have the realtor or broker feel confident that they can make it after all.
Learn about Chelle Law’s Arizona Board of Fingerprinting services.
Arizona Good Cause Exception
If you have been denied a Fingerprint Clearance Card, don’t panic. You may qualify for a Good Cause Exception. The first step to achieving good cause exception is knowing the good cause exception application requirements.
Applicants will have the Arizona Board of Fingerprinting assess their application. To do this, they must comply with a reasonably comprehensive application package. Please understand the good cause exception application requirements or submit a complete application package to ensure you complete the process on time. It can also ultimately result in the denial of your application.
The necessary components of an application package
- Application Form. Applicants should answer ALL of the questions. It will require a statement from the applicant and each arrest embedded in one’s criminal record. The applicant may also include a description of lifestyle changes. Once complete, have the document signed and notarized.
- Letter of Reference Coming From Two Sources. The Board will supplement these forms, which the applicant must then complete. The Board will expect applicants to provide a minimum of two completed forms.
- Reference requirements:
- The individual must know the applicant for a minimum of one (1) year. Must be qualified to write a letter of reference.
- A current employer or someone who has known the applicant for three (3) years may complete the second form. These individuals should also be qualified to write a letter of reference.
- Evidence Applicant Has Completed Sentencing Terms. The applicant must prove their sentencing terms are complete. It can be probation, pardon, parole, restitution, counseling, educational service classes, incarceration, or community service. The applicant will also need to supply a document evidencing its completion. If sentencing requirements still need to be completed, the applicant may provide written statements about such progress accomplished.
- Police reports. It may only apply to some applicants. However, the Board may ask some to provide a police report for each arrest occurring within five (5) years of fingerprint clearance’s denial (or suspension). Applicants must do this even if:
- The arrest did not manifest in the DPS letter.
- Regardless of conviction.
- Disposition Information. Should an applicant’s suspension or denial letter indicate the DPS cannot look for the disposition of an arrest, an applicant will need to provide court documentation specifying such disposition. Should the applicant contact the proper court and it states it has no record, they will need to obtain a statement from the court indicating it has no record.
- Adult Protective Services / Child Protective Services: It’s a mandatory requirement all applicants disclose they have a standing allegation of abuse and/or neglect of a child or adult, whether it leads to criminal charges or not. Suppose the applicant has an allegation relating to a child or adult abuse/neglect. In that case, the applicant must then contact Child Protective Services (“CPS”) or Adult Protective Services (“APSF”) to request a copy of the final report on such an allegation. It will need to be submitted to the Board and paired with a written explanation of such an allegation.
Why would you need an attorney for a good cause exception?
So, many professionals are required to have an Arizona Fingerprint Clearance Card. If you have any criminal history, including an arrest, your application for the card will be denied. Or, if you have a card and later have any arrest, the Board will revoke the card, and you must apply for a good cause exception.
At Chelle Law, we handle and represent clients in the application process. It’s essential to ensure that your application has all the information you need to fill out correctly. A significant portion of this is the documents regarding your criminal history. If it happened within five years, you must have police reports, arrests, and criminal convictions. If the charges were dropped, what were you sentenced to? When was your sentence fulfilled, and were your probation requirements fulfilled if they put you on probation?
All that must be correctly attached to your application must be the official documents with the court’s seal. So, this is one thing that we handle at our office, obtaining all those records and ensuring that you have them for every stage of your case. An attorney in our office will also write your personal statement so that it will paint you in the best light. With your records, we will ensure that we address all the stages of your case and any mitigating circumstances. Like if you had substance abuse issues at that time or were in an abusive relationship going through a stressful time in your life.
The attorney will also show how you have been rehabilitated since then. So, have you completed a treatment program? Anger management classes? We can show the Board of Fingerprinting that you should get this good cause exception because this will not happen again in the future, and you’ve learned from this experience.
Most importantly, if your application gets sent to the hearing department, which it can, and you would have to go before an administrative law judge, we can handle that hearing for you. We can also present you at the hearing, giving you the best chance at getting your good cause exceptions.
They can give you your fingerprint clearance card back after they revoked it, or they can accept your application, and you can get your card.
Length of Good Cause Exception with the Board
The length of the good-cause process depends on several factors. However, when the Board receives a complete application package and court documents, the Board will conduct an expedited review within 20 days. Take note if applying for licensure with another Board.
Arizona Expedited Review for Clearance
Consequently, the Arizona Board of Fingerprinting conducts an initial assessment (an Arizona Good Cause Exception Expedited Review) of complete applications. During the expedited review, they will scrutinize your application. Keep in mind there’s no special request for an expedited review.
This examination of documents and criminal records submitted by the applicant is done without the applicant’s presence (this also differs from a Central Registry Exception). When reviewing the documents, the Board comes up with one of two determinations:
1. If qualified: Without having to appear in a hearing, the applicant may be able to receive a card directly from the Board. Applicants who qualify will receive their card at their residential address. It may take a couple of weeks. Note: the applicant shall submit the needed application and supporting documents within the period provided for by law.
2. If Disqualified: The applicant must appear for a good cause exception hearing. This type of assessment is not tantamount to denial. Applicants still have the right to present their case through oral testimony and present additional pieces of evidence. Note: Parenthetically, within forty-five (45) days after the expedited review, the Board shall come up with a hearing if the applicant does not qualify.
Expedited Review Time-Frame
They shall assess the expedited review twenty (20) days from the time the Board receives the application, together with the criminal history information from the DPS. Thus, in determining a person’s eligibility to obtain a good cause exception under an expedited review, the Board shall consider whether the applicant is charged with a crime or has been convicted of any of the offenses listed in section 41-1758.03 (b) or section 41-1758.07 (b). And that the person has been rehabilitated or is not a recidivist.
Frequently, an expedited review is a remedy that pays close attention to assessment without needing a hearing. The Board can readily hear the case and approve or disapprove the application.
Arizona Fingerprint Clearance Card Criminal History
The Board applies the following criteria to the particular circumstances of your case and Arizona Fingerprint Card Criminal History when determining a Good Cause Exception. The Board also considers any substantiated allegations of minor child abuse or neglect made by Child Protective Services or a similar child welfare agency in another state.
The Board must consider all of the following criteria in determining good cause if initially denied:
- The extent of the person’s criminal record and offenses (misdemeanor or felony).
- Length of time since the offense.
- The nature of the crimes committed (some sexual crimes can preclude getting a card).
- Any applicable mitigating circumstances.
- The degree to which the person participated in the offense.
- The extent of the person’s rehabilitation (for instance, from drug possession), including:
- Completion of probation, parole, or community supervision (like involving alcohol awareness for a DUI),
- Whether the person paid restitution or other compensation for the offense (like property damage during domestic violence),
- Evidence of positive action and use of resources to change criminal behavior, such as completion of a drug treatment program or counseling,
- Personal references attesting to the person’s rehabilitation without exception.
Arizona Fingerprint Card Suspension
You may be dealing with an Arizona Fingerprint Card Suspension if you are currently dealing with a criminal charge. If your fingerprint clearance card has been suspended, you must apply for a Good Cause Exception as a remedy. You can get your Fingerprint Clearance Card back if your criminal records show that you were not charged or convicted of any precluded offenses (certain criminal convictions that automatically stop an applicant from obtaining a clearance card.
A suspension occurs when DPS discovers an individual with a fingerprint clearance card has an arrest for a precluded offense. For example, a cardholder facing a conviction for assault will face fingerprint clearance card suspension. In this event, there’s minimal distinction between denial and suspension for a good cause exception.
When facing a criminal conviction for a precluded offense, the fingerprint clearance card will likely be lost without an opportunity for appeal. Either way, getting an Arizona Fingerprint Clearance Card is possible by filing for a good cause exception.
Automatic Denial of Arizona Fingerprint Clearance Card
DENIAL: Individuals submit their applications to the Department of Public Safety (DPS) with the fingerprint imprint. It happens regardless of if it’s a Level I fingerprint clearance card or a standard fingerprint clearance. DPS then conducts a background investigation on your criminal history statewide and nationwide. If there are arrests on your record, DPS counter-checks your criminal convictions with the list that can cause a possible denial of your clearance card.
These include theft, drug offenses, homicide, assault, and more. These are “precluded offenses.” If a person’s criminal record has precluded offenses, DPS determines whether the disposition is dismissal, conviction, or default.
If there is a conviction: DPS will deny the fingerprint clearance card without the chance to appeal.
Often, the criminal record doesn’t specify the type of disposition. When this happens, DPS performs thorough research with the help of different law enforcement agencies. It allows them to know how the case became final.
Within 30 days after the investigation, and DPS still does not know such disposition, there will be a DENIAL of the fingerprint card. Almost all denials still have a remedy of applying to the Board of Fingerprinting for a good cause exception.
Lawyer for Fingerprint Clearance Card
If you would like to set up a consultation with Chelle Law or learn more about the services our Arizona Fingerprint Card Attorney provides, reach out to us today.