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Criminal Defense


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Having a criminal offense conviction in your past can haunt you for life. It can impact educational opportunities, career opportunities, and even your personal life. Sealing or expunging your record allows for a fresh start and access to these opportunities.

Sealing and expunging records are two different things, although they are commonly used interchangeably. When a criminal history is sealed, the public can no longer access this information. This means that the convictions will no longer show up on criminal background checks for educational organizations or potential employers. Expungement is similar, however there are some differences that make it the more preferable option. When a record is expunged, it is essentially destroyed. The only way to view it is to obtain a court order. This allows for a completely clean slate.

There are many requirements for eligibility for sealing or expunging a record. An applicant cannot have a previous sealed or expunged record, may not be under court ordered probation or supervision, must not have been declared as a delinquent as a juvenile, and may not have been convicted of more than one misdemeanor, felony crime, or criminal ordinance violation anywhere in the United States. An applicant also becomes ineligible depending on the crime(s) that they have committed. If they have been convicted of certain violent and major crimes they become ineligible. These crimes include:

  • Aggravated Assault or Aggravated battery
  • Kidnapping
  • Sexual crimes including a child
  • Homicide
  • Child abuse
  • Arson
  • Terrorism
  • And many others

There is a process to apply for sealing or expungement of a criminal record. First, the applicant must submit an application for a certificate of eligibility for sealing or expungement. The application must be notarized and the applicant must pay a fee. After getting approval, the applicant will receive a certificate of eligibility. Then they must file a petition will the court. If the petition is approved, the court will forward the order to the appropriate organizations and the sealing or expungement will be completed.

The entire process has many steps and requirements which may be difficult to understand completely without legal guidance. Please contact us for more information on how we can assist you with Sealing or Expunging your criminal record.