Is the past really just a mental construct?

Ok, I get the theory that the past is just a mental construct. But my brain doesn’t. So let’s say someone has a felony record for vehicular manslaughter that occurred in 2012. That person’s past continues to effect them today. When they go for a job, they have to disclose (or it is discoverable) that they have a felony record. And the family of the person killed is dealing with the death of that family member going forward. Isn’t that evidence that the past is more than a mental construct? Actions taken in the past continue to have effects in the present.