Megan’s Law for California

updated 11/1/2017

Contact Person: Laurie Denny
Department of Justice
(Phone) 916-210-3005
Offenders Required to Register: California registers adult, juvenile (adjudicated in juvenile court and sent to a state level incarcerating facility) sex offenders, as well as, out of state residents required to register for certain offenses (in other state) that come to California to reside, visit, or work.
Information Collected: Address information on all residences, transient locations frequented, campus information (if applicable), fingerprints, palm prints, photos, vehicle information, drivers license information, occupation, employment data, scars, marks, tattoos, and other identifying information including blood and saliva samples for DNA analysis.
Administrating Agency: State Department of Justice, local law enforcement agencies (LEAs). The local LEAs are the actual registering agencies. The registering agencies have the ability to update the DOJ’s California Sex and Arson Registry database with specified registration information
Timeframe for Registration: Registered sex offenders are required to update their information annually, within five working days of their birthday. Some sex offenders must update more often: transients must update every 30 days, and sexually violent predators, every 90 days.  The California Sex and Arson Registry keeps track of the next required update, and if a registered sex offender is in violation of the update requirements, the Internet web site will show the registrant as being in violation, if the registrant is legally required to be displayed on the public Megan’s Law website.
Applies to Out of State Offenders: Yes, this applies to both adults and juvenile offenders as well as federal and military convictions, for certain convictions.
Duration of Requirement: Once convicted or adjudicated in California, this is a lifetime requirement for both juveniles and adults. In order to be relieved of this requirement, juveniles adjudicated in juvenile court may petition to have their record sealed; adults may petition the court for a Certificate of Rehabilitation in some cases or a full Governor’s Pardon in most cases.
Verification of Address: Offenders update their registration information every time they change their address and thereafter, annually. Registrants must provide proof of address at the time of registration.
Penalties for Non-Compliance: There are various criminal penalties that apply to persons who fail to comply with the sex offender registration requirements. In general, a person convicted of a registrable felony sex offense who willfully violates the registration law is guilty of a felony. A person convicted of a registrable misdemeanor sex offense who violates the registration law is guilty of a misdemeanor on the first violation, and subsequent convictions for violating the registration law are felonies.
Access to Information: In December of 2004, the California Department of Justice made available the “Public Megan’s Law Internet Web Site.” This web site displays photos, provides offender information, and contains a mapping component that allows a person to search for sex offenders, who are legally required to be displayed on the public Megan’s Law website. The map displays the address (if applicable) of the sex registrant. Furthermore, designated law enforcement agencies may provide information to the community about any person required to register as a sex offender by whatever means the entity deems appropriate, when necessary to ensure the public safety.  Registrants are displayed on the public Megan’s Law website pursuant to Penal Code Section 290.46.
Confidentiality Provision: Anyone who uses this information to commit a felony shall be punished by a five-year term of imprisonment in the state prison. Any person who uses this information to commit a misdemeanor shall be subject to a fine of not less than $500 and not more than $1,000.
Number Registered:  

105,316 as of 10/31/17

Percent Compliance: 88,689 registrants (84.2%) are in compliance with registration requirements
Internet Access: California Sex Offender Registry
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