3 Proven Templates: Explain Your Record & Start Fresh

Crafting a letter to address a criminal record involves honesty, responsibility, and proof of rehabilitation, tailored for various recipients like employers, schools, or housing authorities to match your unique circumstances.

Template 1: Letter to a Potential Employer

Subject: Explanation of Criminal Record

Dear [Employer’s Name],

I am writing to you in connection with my application for the [Position Name] at [Company Name], submitted on [Date]. I appreciate the opportunity to apply for this role and feel strongly that my skills and experiences align well with the team’s needs. In the spirit of transparency and integrity, I wish to disclose and explain a criminal record that may arise during your background check process.

In [Year], I was convicted of [Brief Description of the Offense], a mistake stemming from [a brief explanation of circumstances leading to the offense, focusing on the context rather than excuses]. Since serving [sentence, such as probation, community service, or jail time], I have taken proactive steps towards personal and professional growth. These steps include [specific rehabilitation efforts, such as therapy, community service, or professional development courses].

I deeply regret my actions and have learned from this experience, which does not reflect my current values or work ethic. Since then, I have [mention any accomplishments or improvements], demonstrating my commitment to positive contributions and professional excellence.

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I understand the concerns that may arise from my past, but I assure you that I have grown from this experience and am now fully committed to contributing positively to society and the workplace. I am eager to bring my skills and dedication to [Company Name] and contribute to its success.

Thank you for considering my application and for your understanding. I am happy to discuss this matter further if you have any questions or concerns.


[Your Name]
[Your Contact Information]

Template 2: Letter to an Educational Institution

Subject: Explanation of Criminal Record

Dear Admissions Committee,

I am writing as part of my application to [Program Name] at [Institution Name]. I believe in full transparency and wish to address a matter that may impact my application: my criminal record from [Year], relating to [Brief Description of the Offense].

This incident occurred under circumstances that I deeply regret, namely [brief explanation of circumstances]. Since then, I have dedicated myself to personal growth and making amends through [specific actions taken towards rehabilitation, education, or community service].

I have learned invaluable lessons from this experience, including [lessons learned]. My journey since then has been one of continuous improvement and dedication to contributing positively to my community and those around me.

I am applying to [Program Name] because I am committed to furthering my education and using my experiences to contribute to [specific goals related to the program]. My past does not define me, but the lessons learned and the person I have become do.

I appreciate your consideration of my application and my candidness regarding my past. I am fully committed to upholding the values and standards of [Institution Name] and am eager to contribute positively to the campus community.

Thank you for your understanding and for considering my application.


[Your Name]
[Your Contact Information]

Template 3: Letter for Housing Application

Subject: Explanation of Criminal Record

Dear [Landlord’s or Property Manager’s Name],

I hope this letter finds you well. I am writing to express my interest in [Address/Unit Number] and to address an issue that may concern you during the application process: my criminal record from [Year], which involves [Brief Description of the Offense].

This incident was a result of [brief explanation of circumstances], and I have since taken responsibility for my actions and have actively worked towards rehabilitation and making amends. This includes [specific steps taken towards improvement, such as community service, counseling, or employment].

I understand the concerns you may have regarding my past, but I want to assure you that I have learned from this experience and am committed to being a responsible and respectful tenant. My record does not reflect my current character or my ability to be a good neighbor within your community.

Since the incident, I have [mention any positive contributions, stability in employment, or personal achievements], illustrating my dedication to positive change and responsibility.

I am fully committed to adhering to all tenancy rules and to maintaining open and honest communication with you. I believe in the importance of creating a safe and welcoming community and am eager to contribute positively to the neighborhood.

Thank you for considering my application and for taking the time to understand my situation. I am happy to provide further information or references if required.


[Your Name]
[Your Contact Information]

Each template is structured to introduce the situation, explain the circumstances, highlight the steps taken towards rehabilitation, and express a commitment to positive change. 

Adjustments should be made based on personal experiences, the nature of the offense, and the requirements of the recipient.

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