May 11, 2017 By Stephen Klarich


For years, sex offender groups and California lawmakers have discussed making changes to the state sex offender registration system. None of these discussions have ever resulted in revamping or updating the current registration system. But a new bill making its way through the State Senate could soon bring a new tiered registration system to California.

Tiered Sex Offender Registry

Senate Bill 421, known as the Tiered Registry Bill, was introduced by Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco). The proposed law would change sex offender registration by making those convicted of sex crimes register in one of three tiers based on the seriousness of the sex crime they committed and the risk they would pose to the community.

The system would include the following three tiers:

  • Tier 1: Misdemeanor and/or non-violent sex offenders are required to register for 10 years
  • Tier 2: Offenders who have committed serious and/or violent offenses are required to register for 20 years
  • Tier 3: Violent sex predators and habitual sex offenders will remain on the registry for the rest of their lives

Those who are required to register would not be automatically removed from the registry once their term ended, but the bill would establish procedures for terminating sex offender registration under specified conditions. Tier three offenders would be able to petition the court to be reduced to tier two.

The Senate Appropriations Committee will consider Senate Bill 421 in May. From there, it must be approved by the House and Senate before being signed by Governor Jerry Brown. If approved, the law would take effect Jan. 1, 2018.

How is Tiered Registration Different from the Current System?

California is one of the only states to have a universal lifetime registration system. Most sex crimes in California require registration, so those who are convicted of qualifying sex crimes are required to register for life, regardless of the nature of the crime, date of conviction, and risk of re-offending.

Proponents of SB 421 recognize the flaws in the current system. Rather than treating a person who is convicted of indecent exposure the same as someone convicted of child sexual assault, the tiered system would consider the nature of each person’s offense. By introducing a tiered registry, more effort can be put into monitoring high-risk offenders and low-risk offenders will not be forced to deal with the devastating impact of having to register as a sex offender for life.

Contact the Sex Crimes Attorney at Wallin & Klarich Today

If you are currently required to register as a sex offender, you may be eligible to apply for relief from sex offender registration. Our sex crime attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have been successfully helping clients in post-conviction matters for more than 35 years. We may be able to help you end your requirement to register as a sex offender.

With offices in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Los Angeles, Victorville, West Covina, Torrance and San Diego, you can find a dedicated Wallin & Klarich sex crimes attorney available near you no matter where you are located.

Call us now at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free phone consultation. We will be there when you call.

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