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I was given a citation which was labeled a misdemeanor. I went to court and paid the fine. Was I considered "convicted"?

Los Angeles, CA |

The citation was for smoking a cigarette in a public park. In case anyone asks if I've been "convicted" in a court of law or have a "misdemeanor", should I mention this? Also would this bar me from entering other countries like Canada?

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Are you sure it was a misdemeanor ? Check with immigration attorney or Canada consulate .

    ANDREW ROBERTS CRIMINAL AND TRAFFIC TICKET DEFENSE ATTORNEY


  2. If you went to court and paid the fine, you were convicted.

    However, it's possible that the offense was reduced to an infraction. If it was a misdemeanor, you would have been entitled to a jury trial and a court-appointed public defender. The judge would also be required to have you waive those rights before entering a plea.

    I would go to the courthouse where this offense was filed and look at the court's file to see if you were actually convicted of a misdemeanor.

    PLEASE READ BEFORE CONTACTING MY OFFICE: My office is located in Chico, Butte County, California. I offer free consultations to potential clients whose cases are in counties within a 100 mile radius of my office. In order to represent someone who lives outside that area, I would have to charge enough to pay for several hours of travel time to each court appearance. If you're outside that area, it will be more cost-efficient to hire an attorney who practices in your community. I do not accept telephone calls regarding my posts on Avvo. If you need more information, please use the "comments" button or post another question. This is a general discussion of legal principles by a California lawyer and does not create an attorney/client relationship. It's impossible to give detailed, accurate advice based on a few sentences on a website (and you shouldn't provide too much specific information about your legal matter on a public forum like this site, anyway). You should always seek advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction who can give you an informed opinion after reviewing all of the relevant information.


  3. No it will not bar you from entering Canada. The only people who have problems are those with DUIs in the last 5 years. In Canada a DUI is a felony.

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