Can a person convicted of a felony travel outside the continental US?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can a person convicted of a felony travel outside the continental US?

Travel to St. Croix-US Virgin Island.  Convicted of Felonious driving. Already have a current passport.

Asked on January 29, 2011 under Criminal Law, Michigan

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The U.S. Virgin Islands (which include Saint Croix, Saint John, and Saint Thomas) is a territory of the US, consequently a visa is not required of a US citizen traveling to or from this area.  For American travelers, entering those territories is basically no different than traveling from state-to-state.  In fact, as long as an individual’s travel outside the US mainland is restricted to US territories, an American tourist need not even carry a passport.  In such a case, they are only required to carry that which is generally required for air travel (a form of photo identification such as a driver's license).

When traveling outside a US territory however, a convicted criminal may have trouble gaining entry into their destination country.  When entering other countries, in addition to producing their passport, foreign travelers must also obtain a visa.  If the destination country runs a background check as part of their visa issuing process, a criminal record may prevent someone from being granted entry.  The safest thing in this situation is to obtain information about a destination country’s visa issuing process before booking a trip.

Note:  Even if you did not have a current passport, as a general rule a criminal conviction will not prevent an individual from obtaining a passport.  This means that most convicted criminals, including felons, may obtain one unless the terms of sentencing, probation, or parole deny the person a right to a passport.

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You should have no trouble with your passport since you already have one and this is a felony conviction of which you have not broken out of jail.  The only concern is do you need any Visas where you are going? I don't think you do, but if you do, you may need to review Visa requirements (whether they are transit visas, entry visas, or other) if you plan on visiting any country so requiring a Visa in addition to a passport from you. If you are still concerned, visit the U.S. Passport office website and run through the FAQ's.  Also, you can certainly call the customer service number, don't give your name and simply ask a question concerning passport renewal eligibility when you have a previous felony conviction of which you have already served time.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption