Wednesday, July 17, 2024

How To Get A Police Record Expunged

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Can I Get A Record Restricted If The Case Was Placed On The Dead Docket

How do I get my criminal record expunged?

Placing a case on the dead docket means the prosecution suspends the case indefinitely. The case can be reinstated any time by the court. The case, therefore, is still pending while on the dead docket and some employers may not hire you for this reason. If your case was placed on the dead docket and the state has not moved forward with prosecution after twelve months, you can ask the court to restrict the record.

Qualified Charges For Expungement:

A non-felony charge may be expunged if one of the following criteria are met:

  • the charge was dismissed with prejudice
  • the charge was no billed by a grand jury
  • the defendant was found not guilty of the charge
  • the charge was dismissed without prejudice more than two years ago, has not been refiled, and the defendant has not been convicted of any other felony or misdemeanor crime, any violation, or any traffic violation, excluding minor traffic violations, during the previous two years

A non-violent felony charge may be expunged if:

  • if the charge was dismissed with prejudice
  • the charge was no billed by a grand jury
  • the defendant was found not guilty of the charge
  • the charge was dismissed after successful completion of a drug court program, mental health court program, diversion program, veteran’s court, or any court-approved deferred prosecution program AND more than one year has passed from the successful completion of the program
  • if the charge was dismissed without prejudice more than five years ago, was not refiled, and the petitioner has not been convicted of any other felony or misdemeanor crime, any violation, or any traffic violation, excluding minor traffic violations, during the previous five years
  • ninety days have passed from the date of dismissal with prejudice, no-bill, acquittal, or nolle prosequi and the charge has not been refiled

Expunged Records Vs Sealed Records

Some states use different definitions for expunged” and sealed” records, and for the most part those definitions are similar.

Generally, though, sealed records differ from expunged records because sealed records still exist they’re not accessible to the general public or via background checks, but certain entities can obtain a court order to access the records.

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How To Get Your Criminal Record Sealed Or Expunged In Pennsylvania

If you have a criminal record, you have options, including trying to get your record sealed or expunged, or applying for a pardon.

In the United States, there is an estimated total of between 70 million and 100 million people who have some type of criminal record. And for many of them, elements of everyday life such as finding an apartment or job or applying for some types of public aid are often very difficult, if not impossible.

But, depending on the charges or convictions on your record and the length of time since your legal trouble began, you may be able to fully or partially clear your criminal record. But its not necessarily a straightforward process.

Some people are able to navigate the process on their own, says Jamie Gullen, supervising attorney with Community Legal Services of Philadelphias employment unit.

In Pennsylvania, the most common approach is filing a petition to have your record either expunged or sealed. But who is eligible, and how can you apply? Here is what you need to know:

Can I Get A Pardon

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If your record cant be sealed or expunged, that doesnt mean that you are out of options. The remaining option is a pardon, which can be particularly helpful if you were convicted of a felony. A pardon allows you to say that you were never convicted of a crime if an employer asks. But they dont automatically clear your record.

Getting a pardon is similar to filing for expungement or sealing, but you dont have to pay a fee to apply, and you file directly to the Board of Pardons, not an individual county court.

The difficult part, Gullen says, is that you have to get court documents about your case including the criminal complaint, plea or verdict, and sentencing order from the court in which the case was filed, and every county has a slightly different process to obtain those records.

Once you get your documentation and fill out your application, you should expect a lengthy wait. Gullen says that the process can take three to four years from start to end, so pardons generally dont provide immediate relief.

The Philadelphia Inquirer is one of more than 20 news organizations producing Broke in Philly, a collaborative reporting project on solutions to poverty and the citys push toward economic justice. See all of our reporting at

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Who Is Eligible For Expungement

Connecticut is supposed to automatically expunge or pardon charges for criminal offenses if:

  • You were charged with a crime but found not guilty
  • Your case was dismissed
  • The charges against you were dropped at least 13 months ago or
  • Your case was put on hold at least 13 months ago and there has been no prosecution or other disposition of the matter.

You are eligible for expungement, also known as an absolute pardon, for misdemeanor of felony convictions, if:

  • At least three years has passed since the disposition of your most recent misdemeanor conviction and/or
  • At least five years has passed since the disposition of your most recent felony conviction
  • You are not on parole or probation and
  • You do not have any pending charges or other open cases against you in any other jurisdiction, state or federal.

Adults And Criminal Records Not Many Can Expunge An Iowa Criminal Conviction

The State of Iowas policy is to keep most criminal records public. The criminal court docket is online for anyone to see most adult criminal records in Iowa for no cost. This means that a future employer, landlord, spouse, or neighbor can see any adults Iowa criminal record.

Crimes That Can Be Expunged

Most criminal records cannot be removed from a persons Iowa criminal history. However, Iowa law provides that certain records can be expunged if qualifications are met. If they are met, the court can enter an order expunging the record of the case. To get an order expunging the record, a person typically will have to file a written paper in the court case to ask for an order expunging the record. However, some are automatically expunged. If it is expunged, this means that these records will no longer be accessible to the general public. However, it does not mean that a record of the case will cease to exist completely. It may remain on a special list available to the court, prosecutors and law enforcement.

  • Deferred Judgments
  • Dismissals/Acquittals
  • In cases resulting in either a dismissal or acquittal, the court can enter an order expunging the record of the case if the following conditions are met:

  • Public Intoxication, Possession of Alcohol under the Legal Age Conviction, Juvenile Prostitution Conviction , 123.47, 725.1)
  • Adult cases transferred to Juvenile Court , 803.6)
  • Certain Misdemeanor Convictions
  • Governors Pardon

    Effect of Criminal Records

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    Can My Record Be Restricted If I Pled Guilty Under The Conditional Discharge Act

    Under the Conditional Discharge Act certain first time drug offenders can plead guilty, but if they successfully complete their sentence, they are discharged without conviction. Beginning on July 1, 2013, those individuals who have been discharged under the Conditional Discharge Act qualify for record restriction. If you were arrested and sentenced under the Conditional Discharge Act before July 1, 2013, you must complete an application for restriction. If you are arrested and sentenced after July 1, 2013, your charges are restricted upon successful completion of your sentence as soon as the appropriate disposition is entered by the clerk of court or prosecutor.

    Can Any Charges Be Expunged Automatically By The Courts

    How to Expunge Your Record

    Under most circumstances, proof of an arrest will not be expunged automatically by the court and therefore it is your responsibility to either file an expungement petition or hire an attorney to file one on your behalf. In all counties other than Philadelphia there are no circumstances where expungement is automatic. However, Philadelphia has a few pre-trial diversion programs where one benefit of the program is automatic expungement through the court system without the need to file a formal petition for expungement. If you enter and successfully complete the Small Amount of Marijuana program or the Summary Diversion program, the court will handle the expungement process without the need for any action on your part. However, these are rare instances and it is still your responsibility to follow-up to see that any record of your arrest has been officially removed and deleted. If you enter the Alternative Misdemeanor Program and complete it, the charges will be withdrawn but you must file your own petition to have your record expunged. You should contact an experienced Philadelphia expungement attorney if you are unsure which diversion program you completed.

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    Expungements Of Your Criminal Record In Arizona

    Before considering if a convict qualifies for expungement, note that certain offenses cant be overturned. Here are some of the crimes:

  • Felonies that inflict severe bodily harm disqualifies individuals from expungement.
  • Felonies involving the display or use of lethal weapons will disqualify individuals from applying for expungement.
  • If individuals were convicted of a heinous crime driven by sexual urges, they wouldnt qualify for expungement.
  • Crimes committed against victims who are under 15 years do not qualify for expungement.
  • When a defendant engages in a road violation during a period when their licenses have been revoked or suspended, they wont qualify for expungement.
  • If a conviction involves any of the above offenses, it can neither be set aside nor expunged. On the other hand, expungement can only be possible for individuals if the following criteria are satisfied:

    1.An accused must fulfill all the conditions outlined in their initial sentence following their conviction, which include:

    • The defendant must have fully served their prison or jail terms to qualify for expungement.
    • An accused must have fulfilled their probationary terms to be eligible for expungement.
    • The defendant must have fully honored their drug abuse treatment programs to be considered for expungement.
    • If the court had ordered a defendant to do an anger management course, they must finish it before being eligible for expungement.

    Getting A Certificate Of Actual Innocence

    A Certificate of Actual Innocence is perhaps the most powerful form of expungement. This certificate does more than seal a prior record, it proves that a record should never have existed at all. Let’s say that Joe is arrested for vandalism for spraying buildings with graffiti, but the charges are later dropped. Or perhaps Joe is charged with vandalism, and he goes to trial and is found not guilty. In either situation, Joe might seek to obtain a certificate establishing that he was factually innocent of the offense.

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    What Happens After I File The Petition

    After you have filed for expungement and the court has given a copy of the filing to the States Attorney, the States Attorney has 30 days to file an objection to your petition. If the States Attorney does not do so, the court may order the expungement of police and court records relating to your charge.

    If the States Attorney does object, the court will conduct a hearing on your petition at which the court will decide whether or not you are entitled to an expungement.

    The expungement process takes approximately 3 months. Once the Judge signs the expungement order you will receive a copy of the order in the mail as well as a Certificate of Compliance from each agency required to expunge their part of your record.

    If the States Attorney objects to the expungement you will receive a summons in the mail to appear before a Judge and explain why the expungement should be granted.

    TIP: It is important that you personally keep copies of all of the documents and papers relating to the expungement process, including a copy of your case file. There may be times in the future when you need to be able to explain what happened with your expungement, and it can be very difficult to prove what happened once court and police records have been expunged.

    What Is An Expungement

    How to Expunge Your Criminal Records: 8 Steps (with Pictures)

    * This is general information about expungement that is not accurate in all states. Please go to the state page where your record is located.

    Expungement is a legal procedure designed to destroy or remove from view all or part of the records of a case. The exact definition of expungement, which is usually defined by statute, can vary greatly by state. To get state specific expungement information and choose your state.

    An expungement can also mean that the adverse finding or guilt is removed by withdrawing, vacating, annulling or setting aside the finding of guilt, thereby expunging the conviction from the records without otherwise affecting access to the records.

    In many jurisdictions the expunged records can still be considered by courts in future cases or used by law enforcement and government agencies for limited purposes. The quickest and easiest way to see if your case is eligible for expungement in your state is to take our free expungement eligibility test.

    The increase in criminal background checks has been driven by two things. First, the terrorist attacks of 9/11 dramatically heightened concerns over security, which increased criminal background checks for everything from employment to international travel. Second, advances in computers, software and the internet have made it easier for companies to gather criminal records and distribute them to consumers at a very affordable price.

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    Contact A Texas Criminal Record Expunction Attorney

    Now you know how you can get your criminal record expunged in Texas, but the process can be difficult and the judge could deny your petition. Its usually smart to have a lawyer help you with this. Your lawyer can advise you and assist you in completing the petition, which could prevent errors and could increase your chances of a favorable court ruling.

    Get in touch with a criminal record expunction lawyer at Chris Lewis & Associates, P.C.. Use the contact form on this page or call to reach our law firm.

    What If No Charge Was Ever Filed Against Me

    If you were arrested on or after and not charged with a crime, your arrest will be automatically expunged within 60 days of your release from custody.

    If you were arrested before October 1, 2007, you may wish to contact the local arresting police department and ask them to clear the record.

    Read the law: Md. Code, Criminal Procedure § 10-103 and § 10-103.1

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    How Do I Get My Criminal Record Expunged In Wv

    An expungement is the legal means by which a criminal record is removed from public view or sealed. There are several important steps involved in the process of expunging a criminal record. This page is only intended to be a general overview of the process and provide you with basic information about the process of expunging a criminal record. We strongly recommend that you contact an expungement attorney to assist you in the process.

    Who Can See That My Record Has Been Expunged

    How to Clear Your Criminal Record with an Expungement

    * This is general information about expungement that is not accurate in all states. Please go to the state page where your record is located.

    After expungement, when a criminal background check is done that searches for convictions, the record will NOT show up because it is no longer a conviction. That being said, the arrest still remains on the record, as there is a difference between expungement and sealing an arrest.

    The law varies from state to state, but generally, you do not have to disclose your expunged conviction when applying for a job, so when applying to a school or for a new job, a person with an expunged criminal conviction can honestly answer “no” when asked if they have any previous convictions.

    In an Internet-reliant age, anyone with a credit card can perform a background check online on anyone they wish. With a background check, if your record has been expunged, the criminal conviction will not be apparent even if a previous arrest might be. It will simply show as a record of arrest with no conviction. Although the criminal record has been expunged, the remaining arrest could also prove as a hindrance in landing a job.

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    Why Felony Conviction May Still Be Showing On Your Record

    After completing probation of class 6 undesignated felonies, you can qualify for the courts to reduce it to a minor crime. Nevertheless, the courts dont always immediately reduce it to a misdemeanor.

    In case they dont immediately reduce it to a non-indictable offense, you can initiate the process in two different ways:

    And in case they dont immediately reduce it to a non-indictable offense, you can initiate the process in two different ways: Your first alternative would be to request the officer in charge of your probation to submit a petition with the judge to reduce your record to a minor one once your probation is finished. The other option would involve your lawyer submitting a petition with the courts to have your felony reduced to a misdemeanor.

    Although the expunction of convictions in Arizona is evident in respect to the necessary criteria, they may still trickle down to practical issues in line with how you present and defend your petition. It would be helpful if you contact us here at Lane, Hupp, & Crowley today to set up an initial appointment since a fresh start is crucial for different aspects in your future. Alternatively, you can visit our website at to learn more about our services.

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