By law, anyone charged with a crime while under the age of 18 is considered a juvenile, and is placed in the juvenile justice system, instead of the adult criminal system. This has huge advantages, as records of juvenile convictions are sealed upon the juvenile reaching age 18; they never appear on a criminal record absent unusual circumstances. The purposes of the juvenile justice system are also rehabilitative, and not designed to be purely punitive. However, some cases result in juveniles being placed in juvenile detention. Worse, some particularly serious cases or some repeat offenders are transferred to the adult system though still under the age of 18. The juvenile laws are complex and overlapping and a competent attorney can make the difference between “a learning experience” and significant repercussions.