LAWS OF NEW YORK, 1999
CHAPTER 453
Megan's Law


EXPLANATION—Matter in italics is new; matter in brackets [ ] is
old law to be omitted.


LAWS OF NEW YORK, 1999
CHAPTER 453

AN ACT to amend the correction law, the criminal procedure law and the
county law, in relation to the registration of sex offenders

Became a law September 2, 1999, with the approval of the Governor.
Passed on message of necessity pursuant to Article III, section 14 of
the Constitution by a majority vote, three-fifths being present.

The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
bly, do enact as follows:

Section 1. Subdivision 2 of section 168-a of the correction law, as
added by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
2. "Sex offense" means: (a) a conviction of or a conviction for an
attempt to commit any of the provisions of sections 130.25, 130.30,
130.40, 130.45, 130.60 and 255.25 or article [263 ] two hundred sixty-
three of the penal law, or section 135.05, 135.10, 135.20 or 135.25 of
such law relating to kidnapping offenses, provided the victim of such
kidnapping or related offense is less than seventeen years old and the
offender is not the parent of the victim, or sections 230.04, where the
person patronized is in fact less than seventeen years of age, 230.05 or
230.06 or subdivision two of section 230.30 or section 230.32 of the
penal law; or
(b) a conviction of an offense [of the law ] in any other jurisdiction
[of an offense ] which includes all of the essential elements of any such
felony provided for in paragraph (a) of this subdivision for which a
sentence to a term of imprisonment in excess of one year or a sentence
of death was authorized [and is authorized in this state ] in that juris-
diction irrespective of whether such sentence was imposed or conviction
of a felony in any other jurisdiction for which a sentence to a term of
imprisonment in excess of one year or a sentence of death was authorized
in that jurisdiction and for which the offender is required to register
as a sex offender in the jurisdiction in which the conviction occurred.
§ 2. Subdivision 3 of section 168-a of the correction law, as added by
chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
3. "Sexually violent offense" means: (a) a conviction of or a
conviction for an attempt to commit any of the provisions of sections
130.35, 130.50, 130.65, 130.66, 130.67 [and ], 130.70, 130.75 and 130.80
of the penal law; or
(b) a conviction of an offense [of the law ] in any other jurisdiction
[of an offense ] which includes all of the essential elements of any such
felony provided for in paragraph (a) of this subdivision for which a
sentence to a term of imprisonment in excess of one year or a sentence
of death was authorized and is authorized in this state irrespective of
whether such sentence was imposed or conviction of a felony in any other
jurisdiction for which a sentence to a term of imprisonment in excess of
one year or a sentence of death was authorized in that jurisdiction and
for which the offender is required to register as a sex offender in the
jurisdiction in which the conviction occurred.
§ 3. Subdivision 4 of section 168-a of the correction law, as added
by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
4. "Law enforcement agency having jurisdiction" means: (a) the chief
law enforcement officer in the village, town or city in which the offen-
der expects to reside upon his or her discharge, probation, parole,
release to post-release supervision or upon any form of state or local
conditional release; or (b) if there be no chief law enforcement officer
in such village, town or city, the chief law enforcement officer of the
county in which the offender expects to reside; or (c) if there be no
chief enforcement officer in such village, town, city or county, the
division of state police.
§ 4. Section 168-a of the correction law is amended by adding a new
subdivision 12 to read as follows:
12. Probation means a sentence of probation imposed pursuant to arti-
cle sixty-five of the penal law and shall include a sentence of impri-
sonment imposed in conjunction with a sentence of probation.
§ 5. Subdivision 7 of section 168-a of the correction law, as added by
chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
7. "Sexually violent predator" means a [person who has been convicted
of a sexually violent offense as defined herein, or a sex offender as
defined herein who suffers from a mental abnormality that makes such
person likely to engage in predatory sexual conduct ] sex offender for
whom the risk of repeat offense is high and there exists a threat to the
public safety as determined pursuant to paragraph (c) of subdivision six
of section one hundred sixty-eight-l of this article.
§ 6. Section 168-d of the correction law, as added by chapter 192 of
the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
§ 168-d. Duties of the court. 1. Upon conviction of any of the
offenses set forth in subdivision two or three of section one hundred
sixty-eight-a of this article the court shall certify that the person is
a sex offender and shall include the certification in the order of
commitment, if any, and judgment of conviction. The court shall also
advise the sex offender of [the ] his or her duties [of ] under this arti-
cle. Failure to include the certification in the order of commitment or
the judgment of conviction shall not relieve a sex offender of the obli-
gations imposed by this article.
2. Any sex offender, who is released on probation or discharged upon
payment of a fine, conditional discharge or unconditional discharge
shall, prior to such release or discharge, be informed of his or her
duty to register under this article by the court in which he or she was
convicted. At the time sentence is imposed, such sex offender shall
register with the division on a form prepared by the division. The court
shall require the sex offender to read and sign such form and to
complete the registration portion of such form. The court shall on such
form obtain the address where the sex offender expects to reside upon
his or her release, and shall report the address to the division. The
court shall give one copy of the form to the sex offender and shall send
two copies to the division which shall forward the information to the
law enforcement agency having jurisdiction where the sex offender
expects to reside upon his or her release. The court shall also notify
the district attorney and the sex offender of the date of the determi-
nation proceeding to be held pursuant to subdivision three of this
section, which shall be held at least forty-five days after such notice
is given. The court shall also advise the sex offender that he or she
has a right to a hearing prior to the court's determination, that he or
she has the right to be represented by counsel at the hearing and that
counsel will be appointed if he or she is financially unable to retain
counsel. If the sex offender applies for assignment of counsel to repre-
sent him or her at the hearing and counsel was not previously assigned
to represent the sex offender in the underlying criminal action, the
court shall determine whether the offender is financially unable to
retain counsel. If such a finding is made, the court shall assign coun-
sel to represent the sex offender pursuant to article eighteen-B of the
county law. Where the court orders a sex offender released on probation,
such order must include a provision requiring that he or she comply with
the requirements of this article. Where such sex offender violates such
provision, probation may be immediately revoked in the manner provided
by article four hundred ten of the criminal procedure law. [The court
shall require the sex offender to read and sign such form as may be
required by the division stating the duty to register and the procedure
for registration has been explained to him. The court shall on such
form obtain the address where the sex offender expects to reside upon
his release, and shall report the address to the division. The court
shall give one copy of the form to the sex offender and shall send two
copies to the division which shall forward one copy to the law enforce-
ment agency having jurisdiction where the sex offender expects to reside
upon his release. Within ten calendar days of being released on
probation or discharged upon payment of a fine, such sex offender shall
register with the division for purposes of verifying such sex offender's
intended place of residence. ]
3. For sex offenders [under this section ] released on probation or
discharged upon payment of a fine, conditional discharge or uncondi-
tional discharge, it shall be the duty of the court applying the guide-
lines established in subdivision five of section one hundred sixty-
eight-l of this article to determine the duration of registration
pursuant to section one hundred sixty-eight-h of this article and level
of notification pursuant to subdivision six of section one hundred
sixty-eight-l of this article. [In making the determination, the court
shall review any victim's statement and any materials submitted by the
sex offender. The court shall also allow the sex offender to appear and
be heard, and inform the sex offender of his right to have counsel
appointed, if necessary. ]
At least fifteen days prior to the determination proceeding, the
district attorney shall provide to the court and the sex offender a
written statement setting forth the duration of registration and level
of notification sought by the district attorney together with the
reasons for seeking such determinations. The court shall allow the sex
offender to appear and be heard. The state shall appear by the district
attorney, or his or her designee, who shall bear the burden of proving
the facts supporting the duration of registration and level of notifica-
tion sought by clear and convincing evidence. Where there is a dispute
between the parties concerning the duration of registration and level of
notification, the court shall adjourn the hearing as necessary to permit
the sex offender or the district attorney to obtain materials relevant
to the determination from any state or local facility, hospital, insti-
tution, office, agency, department or division. Such materials may be
obtained by subpoena if not voluntarily provided to the requesting
party. In making the determination, the court shall review any victim's
statement and any relevant materials and evidence submitted by the sex
offender and the district attorney and the court may consider reliable
hearsay evidence submitted by either party provided that it is relevant
to the determination. Facts previously proven at trial or elicited at
the time of entry of a plea of guilty shall be deemed established by
clear and convincing evidence and shall not be relitigated. The court
shall render an order setting forth its risk level determination and the
findings of fact and conclusions of law on which the determination is
based. A copy of the order shall be submitted by the court to the divi-
sion. Upon application of either party, the court shall seal any portion
of the court file or record which contains material that is confidential
under any state or federal statute. Either party may appeal as of right
from the order pursuant to the provisions of articles fifty-five,
fifty-six and fifty-seven of the civil practice law and rules. Where
counsel has been assigned to represent the sex offender upon the ground
that the sex offender is financially unable to retain counsel, that
assignment shall be continued throughout the pendency of the appeal, and
the person may appeal as a poor person pursuant to article eighteen-B of
the county law.
§ 7. Subdivision 1 of section 168-e of the correction law, as added by
chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
1. Any sex offender, to be discharged, paroled, released to post-re-
lease supervision or released from any state or local correctional
facility, hospital or institution where he or she was confined or
committed, shall [within forty-five ] at least fifteen calendar days
prior to discharge, parole or release, be informed of his or her duty to
register under this article, by the facility in which he or she was
confined or committed. The facility shall require the sex offender to
read and sign such form as may be required by the division stating the
duty to register and the procedure for registration has been explained
to him or her and to complete the registration portion of such form.
The facility shall obtain on such form the address where the sex offen-
der expects to reside upon his or her discharge, parole or release and
shall report the address to the division. The facility shall give one
copy of the form to the sex offender, retain one copy and shall send
[two copies ] one copy to the division which shall [forward one copy ]
provide the information to the law enforcement agency having jurisdic-
tion where the sex offender expects to reside upon his or her discharge,
parole or release. [In addition, the ] The facility shall give the sex
offender a form prepared by the division, to register with the division
[within ten ] at least fifteen calendar days [for purposes of verifying
such sex offender's intended place of residence ] prior to release and
such form shall be completed, signed by the sex offender and sent to the
division by the facility at least ten days prior to the sex offender's
release or discharge.
§ 8. The section heading and subdivision 1 of section 168-f of the
correction law, as added by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended
to read as follows:
Duty to register and to verify. 1. Any sex offender[, who is
discharged, paroled or released ] shall, (a) at least ten calendar days
prior to discharge, parole, release to post-release supervision or
release from any state or local correctional facility, hospital or
institution where he or she was confined or committed, [shall ] or, (b)
at the time sentence is imposed for any sex offender released on
probation or discharged upon payment of a fine, conditional discharge or
unconditional discharge, register with the division [within ten calendar
days for purposes of verifying such sex offender's intended place of
residence ] on a form prepared by the division.
§ 9. Paragraph (c) of subdivision 2 of section 168-f of the correction
law, as added by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as
follows:
(c) If the sex offender fails to mail the signed verification form to
the division within ten calendar days after receipt of the form, he or
she shall be in violation of this section unless he proves that he or
she has not changed his or her residence address.
§ 10. Subdivision 3 of section 168-f of the correction law, as added
by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
3. The provisions of subdivision two of this section shall be applied
to a sex offender required to register under this article except that
such sex offender designated as a sexually violent predator having been
given a level three designation must personally verify with the local
law enforcement agency, the registration every ninety calendar days
after the date of [the initial ] release or commencement of parole or
post-release supervision, or probation, or release on payment of a fine,
conditional discharge or unconditional discharge.
§ 11. Sections 168-h, 168-i, 168-j and 168-k of the correction law, as
added by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, are amended to read as
follows:
§ 168-h. Duration of registration and verification. The duration of
registration and verification for a sex offender shall be annually for a
period of ten years from the initial date of registration, provided,
however, that for a sexually violent predator, he shall annually [regis-
ter and verify quarterly ] verify his address with the division and shall
also personally verify his address every ninety calendar days with the
local law enforcement agency having jurisdiction where the offender
resides for a minimum of ten years unless the court determines in
accordance with section one hundred sixty-eight-o of this article, that
the person no longer suffers from a mental abnormality that would make
him likely to engage in a predatory sexually violent offense.
§ 168-i. Registration and verification requirements. Registration and
verification as required by this article shall consist of a statement in
writing signed by the sex offender giving the information that is
required by the division and the division shall enter the information
into an appropriate electronic data base or file.
§ 168-j. Notification of local law enforcement agencies of change of
address. (a) Upon receipt of a change of address by a sex offender
required to register under this article, the [local law enforcement
agency where the sex offender last registered shall within three calen-
dar days of receipt of the new address, forward this information to the ]
division [and to ] shall notify the local law enforcement agency having
jurisdiction of the new place of residence and the local law enforcement
agency where the sex offender last resided of the new place of
residence.
(b) [A change of address by a sex offender required to register under
this article shall be immediately reported by the division to the appro-
priate law enforcement agency having jurisdiction where the sex offender
is residing.
(c) ] Upon receipt of change of address information, the local law
enforcement agency having jurisdiction of the new place of residence
shall adhere to the notification provisions set forth in subdivision six
of section one hundred sixty-eight-l of this article.
§ 168-k. Registration for change of address from another state. 1. A
sex offender who has been convicted of an offense which requires regis-
tration under paragraph (b) of subdivision two or three of section one
hundred sixty-eight-a of this article shall [register the new address
with ] notify the division of the new address no later than ten calendar
days after such sex offender establishes residence in this state. [The
division shall coordinate with the designated law enforcement agency of
the state of which the individual departed on information relevant to
the duration of registration. ]
2. The division shall advise the board that the sex offender has
established residence in this state. The board shall determine whether
the sex offender is required to register with the division. If it is
determined that the sex offender is required to register, the division
shall notify the sex offender of his or her duty to register under this
article and shall require the sex offender to sign a form as may be
required by the division acknowledging that the duty to register and the
procedure for registration has been explained to the sex offender. The
division shall obtain on such form the address where the sex offender
expects to reside within the state and the sex offender shall retain one
copy of the form and send two copies to the division which shall provide
the information to the law enforcement agency having jurisdiction where
the sex offender expects to reside within this state. No later than
thirty days prior to the board making a recommendation, the sex offender
shall be notified that his or her case is under review and that he or
she is permitted to submit to the board any information relevant to the
review. After reviewing any information obtained, and applying the
guidelines established in subdivision five of section one hundred
sixty-eight-l of this article, the board shall within sixty calendar
days make a recommendation regarding the duration of registration pursu-
ant to section one hundred sixty-eight-h of this article and level of
notification pursuant to subdivision six of section one hundred sixty-
eight-l of this article. This recommendation shall be confidential and
shall not be available for public inspection. It shall be submitted by
the board to the county court or supreme court and to the district
attorney in the county of residence of the sex offender and to the sex
offender. It shall be the duty of the county court or supreme court in
the county of residence of the sex offender, applying the guidelines
established in subdivision five of section one hundred sixty-eight-l of
this article, to determine the duration of registration pursuant to
section one hundred sixty-eight-h of this article and level of notifica-
tion pursuant to subdivision six of section one hundred sixty-eight-l of
this article. At least thirty days prior to the determination proceed-
ing, such court shall notify the district attorney and the sex offender,
in writing, of the date of the determination proceeding and the court
shall also provide the district attorney and sex offender with a copy of
the recommendation received from the board and any statement of the
reasons for the recommendation received from the board. The court shall
also advise the sex offender that he or she has a right to a hearing
prior to the court's determination, that he or she has the right to be
represented by counsel at the hearing and that counsel will be appointed
if he or she is financially unable to retain counsel. A returnable form
shall be enclosed in the court's notice to the sex offender on which the
sex offender may apply for assignment of counsel. If the sex offender
applies for assignment of counsel and the court finds that the offender
is financially unable to retain counsel, the court shall assign counsel
to represent the sex offender pursuant to article eighteen-B of the
county law. If the district attorney seeks a determination that differs
from the recommendation submitted by the board, at least ten days prior
to the determination proceeding the district attorney shall provide to
the court and the sex offender a statement setting forth the duration of
registration and level of notification sought by the district attorney
together with the reasons for seeking such determinations. The court
shall allow the sex offender to appear and be heard. The state shall
appear by the district attorney, or his or her designee, who shall bear
the burden of proving the facts supporting the duration of registration
and level of notification sought by clear and convincing evidence. It
shall be the duty of the court applying the guidelines established in
subdivision five of section one hundred sixty-eight-l of this article to
determine the duration of registration pursuant to section one hundred
sixty-eight-h of this article and level of notification pursuant to
subdivision six of section one hundred sixty-eight-l of this article.
Where there is a dispute between the parties concerning the duration of
registration and level of notification, the court shall adjourn the
hearing as necessary to permit the sex offender or the district attorney
to obtain materials relevant to the determination from the state board
of examiners of sex offenders or any state or local facility, hospital,
institution, office, agency, department or division. Such materials may
be obtained by subpoena if not voluntarily provided to the requesting
party. In making the determination the court shall review any victim's
statement and any relevant materials and evidence submitted by the sex
offender and the district attorney and the recommendation and any mate-
rial submitted by the board, and may consider reliable hearsay evidence
submitted by either party, provided that it is relevant to the determi-
nation. If available, facts proven at trial or elicited at the time of a
plea of guilty shall be deemed established by clear and convincing
evidence and shall not be relitigated. The court shall render an order
setting forth its risk level determination and the findings of fact and
conclusions of law on which the determination is based. A copy of the
order shall be submitted by the court to the division. Upon application
of either party, the court shall seal any portion of the court file or
record which contains material that is confidential under any state or
federal statute. Either party may appeal as of right from the order
pursuant to the provisions of articles fifty-five, fifty-six and fifty-
seven of the civil practice law and rules. Where counsel has been
assigned to represent the sex offender upon the ground that the sex
offender is financially unable to retain counsel, that assignment shall
be continued throughout the pendency of the appeal, and the person may
appeal as a poor person pursuant to article eighteen-B of the county
law.
§ 12. The opening paragraph of subdivision 6 of section 168-l of the
correction law, as added by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended
to read as follows:
Applying these guidelines, the board shall within sixty calendar days
prior to the discharge, parole, release to post-release supervision or
release of a sex offender make a recommendation which shall be confiden-
tial and shall not be available for public inspection, to the sentencing
court as to whether such sex offender warrants the designation of sexu-
ally violent predator. In addition, the guidelines shall be applied by
the board to make a recommendation to the sentencing court which shall
be confidential and shall not be available for public inspection,
providing for one of the following three levels of notification
[notwithstanding any other provision of law ] depending upon the degree
of the risk of re-offense by the sex offender.
§ 13. Paragraphs (b) and (c) of subdivision 6 of section 168-l of the
correction law, as added by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, are amended
to read as follows:
(b) If the risk of repeat offense is moderate, a level two designation
shall be given to such sex offender. In such case the law enforcement
agency having jurisdiction and the law enforcement agency having had
jurisdiction at the time of his or her conviction shall be notified and
may disseminate relevant information which may include the name of the
sex offender, approximate address based on sex offender's zip code, a
photograph of the offender, background information including the
offender's crime of conviction, modus of operation, type of victim
targeted and the description of special conditions imposed on the offen-
der to any entity with vulnerable populations related to the nature of
the offense committed by such sex offender. Any entity receiving infor-
mation on a sex offender may disclose or further disseminate such infor-
mation at their discretion.
(c) If the risk of repeat offense is high and there exists a threat to
the public safety, such sex offender shall be deemed a "sexually violent
predator" and a level three designation shall be given to such sex
offender. In such case, the law enforcement agency having jurisdiction
and the law enforcement agency having had jurisdiction at the time of
his or her conviction shall be notified and may disseminate relevant
information which may include the sex offender's name, exact address, a
photograph of the offender, background information including the
offender's crime of conviction, modus of operation, type of victim
targeted, and the description of special conditions imposed on the
offender to any entity with vulnerable populations related to the nature
of the offense committed by such sex offender. Any entity receiving
information on a sex offender may disclose or further disseminate such
information at their discretion. In addition, in such case, the informa-
tion described herein shall also be provided in the subdirectory estab-
lished in this article and notwithstanding any other provision of law,
such information shall, upon request, be made available to the public.
§ 14. Section 168-l of the correction law is amended by adding a new
subdivision 8 to read as follows:
8. A failure by a state or local agency or the board to act or by a
court to render a determination within the time period specified in this
article shall not affect the obligation of the sex offender to register
or verify under this article nor shall such failure prevent a court from
making a determination regarding the sex offender's duration of regis-
tration and level of notification. Where a court is unable to make a
determination prior to the date scheduled for a sex offender's
discharge, parole, release to post-release supervision or release, it
shall adjourn the hearing until after the offender is discharged,
paroled, released to post-release supervision or released, and shall
then expeditiously complete the hearing and issue its determination.
§ 15. Section 168-m of the correction law, as added by chapter 192 of
the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
§ 168-m. Review. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the
contrary, any state or local correctional facility, hospital or institu-
tion, district attorney, law enforcement agency, probation department,
division of parole, court or child protective agency shall forward rele-
vant information pertaining to a sex offender to be discharged, paroled,
released to post-release supervision or released to the board for review
no later than one hundred twenty days prior to the release or discharge
and the board shall make recommendations as provided in subdivision six
of section one hundred sixty-eight-l of this article within sixty days
of receipt of the information. Information may include but may not be
limited to all or a portion of the arrest file, prosecutor's file,
probation or parole file, child protective file, court file, commitment
file, medical file and treatment file pertaining to such person. Such
person shall be permitted to submit to the board any information rele-
vant to the review. Upon application of the sex offender or the
district attorney, the court shall seal any portion of the board's file
pertaining to the sex offender which contains material that is confiden-
tial under any state or federal law; provided, however, that in any
subsequent proceedings in which the sex offender who is the subject of
the sealed record is a party and which requires the board to provide a
recommendation to the court pursuant to this article, such sealed record
shall be available to the sex offender, the district attorney, the court
and the attorney general where the attorney general is a party, or
represents a party, in the proceeding.
§ 16. Subdivisions 1, 2 and 3 of section 168-n of the correction law,
as added by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, are amended to read as
follows:
1. A determination that an offender is a sex offender or a sexually
violent predator shall be made prior to the discharge, parole, release
to post-release supervision or release of such offender by the sentenc-
ing court applying the guidelines established in subdivision five of
section one hundred sixty-eight-l of this article after receiving a
recommendation from the board pursuant to section one hundred sixty-
eight-l of this article.
2. In addition, applying the guidelines established in subdivision
five of section one hundred sixty-eight-l of this article, the sentenc-
ing court shall also make a determination with respect to the level of
notification, after receiving a recommendation from the board pursuant
to section one hundred sixty-eight-l of this article. Both determi-
nations of the sentencing court shall be made thirty calendar days prior
to discharge, parole or release.
3. [In making the determination, the court shall, review any victim's
statement and any materials submitted by the sex offender. The court
shall also allow the sex offender to appear and be heard, and inform the
sex offender of his right to have counsel appointed, if necessary. ] No
later than thirty days prior to the board's recommendation, the sex
offender shall be notified that his or her case is under review and that
he or she is permitted to submit to the board any information relevant
to the review. Upon receipt of the board's recommendation, the sentenc-
ing court shall determine whether the sex offender was previously found
to be eligible for assigned counsel in the underlying case. Where such a
finding was previously made, the court shall assign counsel to represent
the offender, pursuant to article eighteen-B of the county law. At
least twenty days prior to the determination proceeding, the sentencing
court shall notify the district attorney, the sex offender and the sex
offender's counsel, in writing, of the date of the determination
proceeding and shall also provide the district attorney, the sex offen-
der and the sex offender's counsel with a copy of the recommendation
received from the board and any statement of the reasons for the recom-
mendation received from the board. The written notice to the sex offen-
der shall also advise the offender that he or she has a right to a hear-
ing prior to the court's determination, and that he or she has the right
to be represented by counsel at the hearing. If counsel has been
assigned to represent the offender at the determination proceeding, the
notice shall also provide the name, address and telephone number of the
assigned counsel. Where counsel has not been assigned, the notice shall
advise the sex offender that counsel will be appointed if he or she is
financially unable to retain counsel, and a returnable form shall be
enclosed in the court's notice to the sex offender on which the sex
offender may apply for assignment of counsel. If the sex offender
applies for assignment of counsel and the court finds that the offender
is financially unable to retain counsel, the court shall assign counsel
to represent the sex offender pursuant to article eighteen-B of the
county law. If the district attorney seeks a determination that differs
from the recommendation submitted by the board, at least ten days prior
to the determination proceeding the district attorney shall provide to
the court and the sex offender a statement setting forth the duration of
registration and level of notification sought by the district attorney
together with the reasons for seeking such determinations. The court
shall allow the sex offender to appear and be heard. The state shall
appear by the district attorney, or his or her designee, who shall bear
the burden of proving the facts supporting the duration of registration
and level of notification sought by clear and convincing evidence. Where
there is a dispute between the parties concerning the duration of regis-
tration and level of notification, the court shall adjourn the hearing
as necessary to permit the sex offender or the district attorney to
obtain materials relevant to the determination from the state board of
examiners of sex offenders or any state or local facility, hospital,
institution, office, agency, department or division. Such materials may
be obtained by subpoena if not voluntarily provided to the requesting
party. In making the determination the court shall review any victim's
statement and any relevant materials and evidence submitted by the sex
offender and the district attorney and the recommendation and any mate-
rials submitted by the board, and may consider reliable hearsay evidence
submitted by either party, provided that it is relevant to the determi-
nation. Facts previously proven at trial or elicited at the time of
entry of a plea of guilty shall be deemed established by clear and
convincing evidence and shall not be relitigated. The court shall render
an order setting forth its risk level determination and the findings of
fact and conclusions of law on which the determination is based. A copy
of the order shall be submitted by the court to the division. Upon
application of either party, the court shall seal any portion of the
court file or record which contains material that is confidential under
any state or federal statute. Either party may appeal as of right from
the order pursuant to the provisions of articles fifty-five, fifty-six
and fifty-seven of the civil practice law and rules. Where counsel has
been assigned to represent the sex offender upon the ground that the sex
offender is financially unable to retain counsel, that assignment shall
be continued throughout the pendency of the appeal, and the person may
appeal as a poor person pursuant to article eighteen-B of the county
law.
§ 17. Subdivision 5 of section 168-n of the correction law, as added
by chapter 192 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
5. Upon the reversal of a conviction of a sexual offense defined in
paragraphs (a) and (b) of subdivision two or three of section one
hundred sixty-eight-a of this article, the appellate court shall remand
the case to the lower court for entry of an order directing the expunge-
ment of any records required to be kept herein.
§ 18. Section 168-o of the correction law, as added by chapter 192 of
the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
§ 168-o. Petition for relief or modification. 1. Any sex offender
required to register or verify pursuant to this article who has been
registered for a minimum period of ten years may be relieved of any
further duty to register upon the granting of a petition for relief by
the sentencing court or by the court which made the determination
regarding duration of registration and level of notification if a peti-
tion for relief is filed by a sex offender who is required to register
pursuant to the provisions of section one hundred sixty-eight-k of this
article. The sex offender shall bear the burden of proving by clear and
convincing evidence that his or her risk of repeat offense and threat to
public safety is such that registration or verification is no longer
necessary. [Upon receipt of the petition for relief, the court shall
notify the board and request an updated report pertaining to the sex
offender. After receiving the report from the board, the court may
grant or deny the relief sought. The court may consult with the victim
prior to making a determination on the petition. ] Such petition, if
granted, shall not relieve the petitioner of the duty to register pursu-
ant to this article upon conviction of any offense requiring registra-
tion in the future. Such a petition shall not be considered more than
annually. In the event that the sex offender's petition for relief is
granted, the district attorney may appeal as of right from the order
pursuant to the provisions of articles fifty-five, fifty-six and fifty-
seven of the civil practice law and rules. Where counsel has been
assigned to represent the sex offender upon the ground that the sex
offender is financially unable to retain counsel, that assignment shall
be continued throughout the pendency of the appeal, and the person may
appeal as a poor person pursuant to article eighteen-B of the county
law.
2. Any sex offender required to register or verify pursuant to this
article may file a petition to modify the duration of registration and
level of notification with the sentencing court or with the court which
made the determination regarding duration of registration and level of
notification if a petition is filed by a sex offender who is required to
register pursuant to the provisions of section one hundred sixty-eight-k
of this article. The petition shall set forth the duration of registra-
tion and level of notification sought, together with the reasons for
seeking such determinations. The sex offender shall bear the burden of
proving the facts supporting the requested modification by clear and
convincing evidence. Such a petition shall not be considered more than
annually. In the event that the sex offender's petition to modify the
duration of registration and level of notification is granted, the
district attorney may appeal as of right from the order pursuant to the
provisions of articles fifty-five, fifty-six and fifty-seven of the
civil practice law and rules. Where counsel has been assigned to repre-
sent the sex offender upon the ground that the sex offender is finan-
cially unable to retain counsel, that assignment shall be continued
throughout the pendency of the appeal, and the person may appeal as a
poor person pursuant to article eighteen-B of the county law.
3. The district attorney may file a petition to modify the duration of
registration and level of notification for a sex offender with the
sentencing court or with the court which made the determination regard-
ing duration of registration and level of notification if the petition
relates to a sex offender who is required to register pursuant to the
provisions of section one hundred sixty-eight-k of this article, where
the sex offender (a) has been convicted of a new crime, or there has
been a determination after a proceeding pursuant to section 410.70 of
the criminal procedure law or section two hundred fifty-nine-i of the
executive law that the sex offender has violated one or more conditions
imposed as part of a sentence of a conditional discharge, probation,
parole or post-release supervision for a designated crime, and (b) the
conduct underlying the new crime or the violation is of a nature that
indicates an increased risk of a repeat sex offense. The petition shall
set forth the duration of registration and level of notification sought,
together with the reasons for seeking such determinations. The district
attorney shall bear the burden of proving the facts supporting the
required modification, by clear and convincing evidence. Such a petition
shall not be considered more than annually. In the event that the
district attorney's petition is granted, the sex offender may appeal as
of right from the order, pursuant to the provisions of articles fifty-
five, fifty-six and fifty-seven of the civil practice law and rules.
Where counsel has been assigned to represent the offender upon the
ground that he or she is financially unable to retain counsel, that
assignment shall be continued throughout the pendency of the appeal, and
the person may proceed as a poor person, pursuant to article eighteen-B
of the county law.
4. Upon receipt of a petition submitted pursuant to subdivision one,
two or three of this section, the court shall forward a copy of the
petition to the board and request an updated recommendation pertaining
to the sex offender and shall provide a copy of the petition to the
other party. The court shall also advise the sex offender that he or
she has the right to be represented by counsel at the hearing and coun-
sel will be appointed if he or she is financially unable to retain coun-
sel. A returnable form shall be enclosed in the court's notice to the
sex offender on which the sex offender may apply for assignment of coun-
sel. If the sex offender applies for assignment of counsel and the court
finds that the offender is financially unable to retain counsel, the
court shall assign counsel to represent the offender, pursuant to arti-
cle eighteen-B of the county law. Where the petition was filed by a
district attorney, at least thirty days prior to making an updated
recommendation the board shall notify the sex offender and his or her
counsel that the offender's case is under review and he or she is
permitted to submit to the board any information relevant to the review.
The board's updated recommendation on the sex offender shall be confi-
dential and shall not be available for public inspection. After receiv-
ing an updated recommendation from the board concerning a sex offender,
the court shall, at least thirty days prior to ruling upon the petition,
provide a copy of the updated recommendation to the sex offender, the
sex offender's counsel and the district attorney and notify them, in
writing, of the date set by the court for a hearing on the petition.
After reviewing the recommendation received from the board and any rele-
vant materials and evidence submitted by the sex offender and the
district attorney, the court may grant or deny the petition. The court
may also consult with the victim prior to making a determination on the
petition. The court shall render an order setting forth its determi-
nation, and the findings of fact and conclusions of law on which the
determination is based. If the petition is granted, it shall be the
obligation of the court to submit a copy of its order to the division.
Upon application of either party, the court shall seal any portion of
the court file or record which contains material that is confidential
under any state or federal statute.
§ 19. The section heading and subdivision 1 of section 168-q of the
correction law, the section heading as added by chapter 192 of the laws
of 1995 and subdivision 1 as amended by chapter 113 of the laws of 1999,
are amended to read as follows:
[Sexually violent predator subdirectory ] Subdirectory of high risk
(level 3) sex offenders. 1. The division [ of criminal justice services ]
shall maintain a subdirectory of sexually violent predators. The subdi-
rectory shall include the exact address and photograph of the sex offen-
der along with the following information, if available: name, physical
description, age and distinctive markings. Background information
including the sex offender's crime of conviction, modus of operation,
type of victim targeted, and a description of special conditions imposed
on the sex offender shall also be included. The subdirectory shall have
sex offender listings categorized by county and zip code. A copy of the
subdirectory shall annually be distributed to the offices of local
village, town [or ], city [police departments ], county or state law
enforcement agencies for purposes of public access. The division [of
criminal justice services ] shall distribute monthly updates to the
offices of local village, town [or ], city [police departments ], county
or state law enforcement agencies for purposes of public access. Such
departments shall require that a person in writing [express a purpose in
order to have access to the subdirectory and such department shall main-
tain these requests ] provide their name and address prior to viewing the
subdirectory. Any information identifying the victim by name, birth
date, address or relation to the sex offender shall be excluded from the
subdirectory distributed for purposes of public access. The subdirecto-
ry provided for herein shall be updated monthly to maintain its effi-
ciency and usefulness and may be computer accessible.
§ 20. Section 168-t of the correction law, as added by chapter 192 of
the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows:
§ 168-t. Failure to register or verify; penalty. Any [person ] sex
offender required to register or to verify pursuant to the provisions of
this article who fails to register or verify in the manner and within
the time periods provided for herein shall be guilty of a class A misde-
meanor upon conviction for the first offense, and upon conviction for a
second or subsequent offense shall be guilty of a class D felony. Any
such failure to register or verify may also be the basis for revocation
of parole pursuant to section two hundred fifty-nine-i of the executive
law or the basis for revocation of probation pursuant to article four
hundred ten of the criminal procedure law.
§ 21. Subdivision 2-a of section 190.30 of the criminal procedure law,
as amended by chapter 360 of the laws of 1998, is amended to read as
follows:
2-a. When the electronic transmission of a certified report, or certi-
fied copy thereof, of the kind described in subdivision two or three-a
of this section or a sworn statement or copy thereof, of the kind
described in subdivision three of this section results in a written
document, such written document may be received in such grand jury
proceeding provided that: (a) a transmittal memorandum completed by the
person sending the report contains a certification that the report has
not been altered and a description of the report specifying the number
of pages; and (b) the person who receives the electronically transmitted
document certifies that such document and transmittal memorandum were so
received; and (c) a certified report or a certified copy or sworn state-
ment or sworn copy thereof is filed with the court within twenty days
following arraignment upon the indictment; and (d) where such written
document is a sworn statement or sworn copy thereof of the kind
described in subdivision three of this section, such sworn statement or
sworn copy thereof is also provided to the defendant or his counsel
within twenty days following arraignment upon the indictment.
§ 22. Section 190.30 of the criminal procedure law is amended by
adding a new subdivision 3-a to read as follows:
3-a. A sex offender registration form, sex offender registration
continuation/supplemental form, sex offender registry address verifica-
tion form, sex offender change of address form or a copy of such form
maintained by the division of criminal justice services concerning an
individual who is the subject of a grand jury proceeding, may, when
certified by a person designated by the commissioner of the division of
criminal justice services as the person to certify such records, as a
true copy thereof, be received in such grand jury proceeding as evidence
of the facts stated therein.
§ 23. The opening paragraph of section 722 of the county law, as
amended by chapter 682 of the laws of 1977, is amended to read as
follows:
The governing body of each county and the governing body of the city
in which a county is wholly contained shall place in operation through-
out the county a plan for providing counsel to persons charged with a
crime or who are entitled to counsel pursuant to section two hundred
sixty-two or section eleven hundred twenty of the family court act,
article six-C of the correction law or section four hundred seven of the
surrogate's court procedure act, who are financially unable to obtain
counsel. Each plan shall also provide for investigative, expert and
other services necessary for an adequate defense. The plan shall conform
to one of the following:
§ 24. Section 722 of the county law is amended by adding a new subdi-
vision 5 to read as follows:
5. In classification proceedings under article six-C of the correction
law or from an appeal thereof, representation shall be according to a
plan described in subdivisions one, two, three or four of this section.
If such plan includes representation by a private legal aid bureau or
society, such private legal aid bureau or society shall have been desig-
nated to give legal assistance and representation to persons charged
with a crime.
§ 25. The closing paragraph of section 722 of the county law, as
amended by chapter 682 of the laws of 1997, is amended to read as
follows:
Upon an appeal in a criminal action, and on any appeal described in
section eleven hundred twenty of the family court act, article six-C of
the correction law or section four hundred seven of the surrogate's
court procedure act, wherein the party is financially unable to obtain
counsel, the appellate court shall assign counsel furnished in accord-
ance with the plan, conforming to the requirements of this section,
which is in operation in the county or in the city in which a county is
wholly contained wherein the judgment of conviction, disposition, or
order of the trial court was entered; provided, however, that when such
county or city has not placed in operation a plan conforming to that
prescribed in subdivision three or four of this section and such appel-
late court is satisfied that a conflict of interest prevents the assign-
ment of counsel pursuant to the plan in operation, or when such county
or city has not placed in operation any plan conforming to that
prescribed in this section, such appellate court may assign any attorney
in such county or city and, in such event, such attorney shall receive
compensation and reimbursement from such county or city which shall be
at the same rate as is prescribed in section seven hundred twenty-two-b
of this chapter.
§ 26. The opening paragraph of section 722-b of the county law, as
amended by chapter 317 of the laws of 1987, is amended to read as
follows:
All counsel assigned in accordance with a plan of a bar association
conforming to the requirements of section seven hundred twenty-two
whereby the services of private counsel are rotated and coordinated by
an administrator shall at the conclusion of the representation receive
compensation at a rate not exceeding forty dollars per hour for time
expended in court or before a magistrate, judge or justice, and twenty-
five dollars per hour for time reasonably expended out of court, and
shall receive reimbursement for expenses reasonably incurred; except
that counsel assigned for representation in an appellate court shall
receive compensation at a rate not exceeding forty dollars per hour for
time reasonably expended, whether in court or out of court. Where a
defendant is charged with a crime which may be punishable by death
compensation shall not exceed two thousand four hundred dollars where
one counsel has been assigned, and shall not exceed three thousand two
hundred dollars where two or more counsel have been assigned. Where a
defendant is charged with one or more other felonies, compensation shall
not exceed one thousand two hundred dollars. Where a defendant is
charged with one or more other crimes, compensation shall not exceed
eight hundred dollars. For representation pursuant to the provisions of
section two hundred sixty-two of the family court act, article six-C of
the correction law or section four hundred seven of the surrogate's
court procedure act, compensation shall not exceed eight hundred
dollars. For representation upon the hearing of a motion for a writ of
error coram nobis or a motion to vacate judgment or set aside sentence
made pursuant to article four hundred forty of the criminal procedure
law, compensation shall not exceed eight hundred dollars. For represen-
tation in the court of appeals on an appeal from a judgment of death,
compensation shall not exceed two thousand eight hundred dollars where
one counsel has been assigned, and shall not exceed three thousand two
hundred dollars where two or more counsel have been assigned. For repre-
sentation in an appellate court on an appeal from a judgment of
conviction for one or more other felonies, compensation shall not exceed
one thousand two hundred dollars. For representation in an appellate
court on an appeal in any other criminal action or proceeding, or on any
appeal described in section eleven hundred twenty of the family court
act or section four hundred seven of the surrogate's court procedure
act, compensation shall not exceed eight hundred dollars.
§ 27. The opening paragraph of section 722-c of the county law, as
amended by chapter 682 of the laws of 1977, is amended to read as
follows:
Upon a finding in an ex parte proceeding that investigative, expert or
other services are necessary and that the defendant or other person
described in section two hundred forty-nine or section two hundred
sixty-two of the family court act, article six-C of the correction law
or section four hundred seven of the surrogate's court procedure act, is
financially unable to obtain them, the court shall authorize counsel,
whether or not assigned in accordance with a plan, to obtain the
services on behalf of the defendant or such other person. The court upon
a finding that timely procurement of necessary services could not await
prior authorization may authorize the services nunc pro tunc. The court
shall determine reasonable compensation for the services and direct
payment to the person who rendered them or to the person entitled to
reimbursement. Only in extraordinary circumstances may the court
provide for compensation in excess of three hundred dollars.
§ 28. Subdivision 2 of section 717 of the county law, as amended by
chapter 682 of the laws of 1977, is amended to read as follows:
2. The public defender shall also represent, without charge, in a
proceeding in family court or surrogate's court in the county or coun-
ties where such public defender serves, any person entitled to counsel
pursuant to section two hundred sixty-two and section eleven hundred
twenty of the family court act and section four hundred seven of the
surrogate's court procedure act, or any person entitled to counsel
pursuant to article six-C of the correction law, who is financially
unable to obtain counsel. When representing such person, the public
defender shall counsel and represent him at every stage of the
proceedings, shall initiate such proceedings as in the judgment of the
public defender are necessary to protect the rights of such person, and
may prosecute any appeal when, in his judgment the facts and circum-
stances warrant such appeal.
§ 29. This act shall take effect on the first day of January next
succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law; provided,
however that the amendments made to subdivisions 2 and 3 of section
168-a of the correction law by sections one and two of this act shall
apply to persons convicted of an offense committed prior to such date
who, on such date, have not completed service of the sentence imposed
thereon.

The Legislature of the STATE OF NEW YORK ss:
Pursuant to the authority vested in us by section 70-b of the Public
Officers Law, we hereby jointly certify that this slip copy of this
session law was printed under our direction and, in accordance with such
section, is entitled to be read into evidence.

JOSEPH L. BRUNO SHELDON SILVER
Temporary President of the Senate Speaker of the Assembly

Page last updated July1, 2003