I would really appreciate advice on this, particularly from anyone who's lived in New York.
A little while ago I got a citation for drinking in public in New York City, which is considered a violation under New York state law, but explicitly not a crime. I plead guilty. As many of you may know, in New York it is made very clear that only misdemeanors and felonies are crimes, while "violations" are in a separate category and do not establish or get reported on a criminal record. This is presumably so that the NYPD can continue to give out tickets like lollipops and earn revenue without making criminals out of half the city's population. Again, the law in New York is very specific about this, so when law school apps asked about being charged or convicted of "crimes," I just answered no. I did disclose the incident to schools that asked about all "violations of the law."
At the time, this seemed like a no-brainer, as I did not want to say that I'd been convicted of a crime if I hadn't as defined by the area of jurisdiction. After reading horror stories about the character and fitness proceedings, though, I'm starting to wonder if I should have disclosed the information anyway. Even if it isn't a crime, I don't want the bar examiners to think I'm trying to be cute or cover something up. I've considered e-mailing an addendum to the schools that I didn't disclose the matter to, but I'm naturally afraid that I'll sink my application by trying to update it this late in the cycle. Has anyone been down this road before?
You should update all your applications . . . no one cares about a violation . . . but everyone cares about failure to disclose
A suggestion for other applicants - here's the RULE -> DISCLOSE, DISCLOSE, DISCLOSE
as other UVA folks can attest, the dean of admissions on the first day of orientation told anyone who failed to disclose to immediately meet with him to make the disclosure to prevent issues from popping up with the C&F