An individual who has pled guilty to or been convicted of certain criminal offenses in this state (or an equivalent offense in any state, federal, tribal or international court), may be required to register as a sex offender. Offenders who live in a neighboring state may be required to register in North Dakota if they work or attend school in North Dakota.
- There are no state laws restricting where a sex offender may work. A high risk offender may not reside within 500 feet of a public or nonpublic preschool, elementary, middle or high school. A low or moderate risk offender may live in an apartment building, near a school, park or daycare - unless a condition of that individual’s probation prohibits it. The terms of an offender’s probation are set by the court on a case-by-case basis. If you are concerned about a particular offender, contact your local law enforcement agency.
- There are laws restricting when and whether an offender may be on or in school property. Contact your child’s school for more information.
Offender Risk Levels
All sex offenders are assigned a risk level (for re-offending). The "risk" factor is assigned by a team of professionals consisting of representatives from the Attorney General’s office, DOCR, juvenile services, and other criminal justice entities. The team reviews each offender’s criminal history, evaluations, and other pertinent documents in order to assign the individual either a low, moderate or high risk level. Risk assessments are conducted on an ongoing basis and the sex offender's information on the website is updated when the risk level is assigned or changed.
A LOW risk offender must register for a minimum of 15 years, a MODERATE offender registers for 25 years, and a HIGH risk offender must register for life. An offender who has more than one conviction for a sex offense is required to register for life, regardless of the assessed risk level.
Find information about requesting a risk level review.
Offender Address and Information Verification
Offenders are required to verify their information with law enforcement at a frequency based on their North Dakota status/risk level:
- High Risk: 4x a year – in the months of January, April, July, and October;
- Moderate Risk: 2x a year – in the months of February and August;
- Low Risk or not yet assigned a North Dakota risk level: 1x a year - in the month of their date of birth.
The local police and sheriff's departments do community notifications when a registered offender moves into a neighborhood. A local law enforcement agency considers many factors before deciding when and how to notify the community, and does not have to wait until an offender's risk level has been assigned.
- Ask your local law enforcement agency what the specific policies and procedures are for public notification in your community.
Information for Out of State Registered Offenders
An out of state offender who is temporarily working or visiting in North Dakota must register if the offender will be staying overnight in ND for 10 or more consecutive days, OR if the offender will be staying overnight in ND for 30 days or more in a calendar year even if those days are not consecutive.
There are additional requirements for out of state registered offenders who wish to relocate to this state for work. North Dakota will conduct a risk assessment review to determine your risk level, which may be higher than in your current state of residence.
Failure to fully comply with all North Dakota registration requirements is a criminal offense which carries a minimum mandatory jail sentence.
Sex Offender Website
Only sex offenders who have a lifetime requirement to register or who have been deemed a high risk appear on the state's sex offender website with full details and photographs, and also appear on the national sex offender website.
However, all sex offenders with a requirement to register in North Dakota (including moderate and low risk offenders), are on the state's website on the searchable list, which can be downloaded for a particular city, county, or the entire state. The website – and the searchable list – are updated in real time, all day every day, as changes and updates are reported by courts, law enforcement, parole & probation, the jails, registered offenders, employers, landlords, other states, and the public.
Offenders Against Children
Individuals convicted of crimes that are not sex offenses but which involve, for example, force against or restraint of a child, are required to register as an “offender against children.” These individuals are not sex offenders, and are not listed on the sex offender registry. Like the Sex Offender website, the list of Offenders against Children is updated in real time, all day every day, as changes and updates are reported. Offenders Against Children are required to verify their information with law enforcement within the month of their date of birth.