DOJ Launches Application for Presidential Marijuana Possession Pardons

DOJ launches application for presidential marijuana possession pardons (Designed by Freepik)
March 28, 2023

Individuals with a criminal record often have difficulty obtaining employment and housing. Thankfully, the federal government and many states have recognized this problem and begun working to address it. The federal government intends to help by having the Department of Justice make an online petition available. This petition would allow eligible individuals to get a certificate showing the President has pardoned them for simple possession of marijuana.

If the federal government convicted you of simple possession of marijuana, you could fill out the “Application for Certificate of Pardon for Simple Possession of Marijuana.” This application is on the Office of the Pardon Attorney’s website. This pardon could help by eliminating legal or civil disabilities. For example, it would affect your right to vote or hold office. Furthermore, having proof that you received a pardon from the President could improve your chances for life-changing opportunities. For example, the pardon could help you acquire licenses, bonding, or other items that make it easier to obtain a good job. It also helps when you apply for rental housing.

The President granted a complete pardon to any United States citizen or lawful permanent resident convicted of simple possession of marijuana, with exceptions. For example, it did not apply to other offenses. It also did not apply to non-citizens or anyone not lawfully present in the United States when they committed the crime. Otherwise, citizens or lawful permanent residents at the time of the offense could find it worthwhile to apply for the certificate.

The certificate is proof of your pardon, meaning the law forgave you for the crime. However, it does not imply your innocence. It also does not mean expungement. Additionally, the pardon is only for federal convictions, meaning it does not apply to convictions under state law. The exception to the federal-vs-state law is the District of Columbia’s criminal code, which acknowledges the pardon on the state level.

Once you apply, the Department of Justice will review the submitted information and send out the certificate as soon as possible after determining your eligibility. After receiving it, you could improve your job and housing opportunities.

Before applying for a job, you should also run a self-background check to check for any errors or other negative information in your background check before potential employers see them. Taking the time to review your report can prevent possible mistakes that may cost you employment opportunities.

Background checks don’t have to be complicated. Try running a Self Background Check today and give yourself a head start.