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Expungement

A criminal record can have negative ramifications. It can interfere with your chances of getting certain good jobs, can cause difficulty obtaining a professional license and can prevent you from renting a home. Expunging your record can help you get the job and home your deserve.

Expungement vs. Record Sealing

Black’s Law Black’s Law Dictionary defines “Expungement of record” as the “Process by which record of criminal conviction is destroyed. In California expungement is the process of reopening your criminal proceeding and reversing the conviction to a dismissal. Sealing and expungement of a criminal record are often mistaken as the same thing. In sealing of records, the criminal record is hidden from the public but still on record. Sealing can be reversed or the record can be temporarily opened by court order. With true expungement the record is destroyed. In effect, only record sealing is available in California (even though it is commonly called expungement) and each separate offense must be applied for.

When an Expungement is granted, the person whose record is expunged may, for most purposes, treat the event as if it never occurred. An Expungement can be granted only by a judge.

Criteria

If you have been convicted of an infraction you may be eligible for expungement if you meet certain criteria.

This might include:

  • Sufficient time since the indictment or the conclusion of the criminal case;
  • No additional criminal history since the end of the case;
  • No convictions for certain disqualifying offenses, which usually include serious felonies;
  • Minimal prior criminal history; and
  • Completion of all terms of deferred disposition, probation, parole, or the sentence.

California does not allow expungement for offenses involving sexual offenses against children, murder, and kidnapping. Expungement will not apply, and may be reversed, in cases where the offense is repeated.

If your conviction was for a felony, expungement is the first step in obtaining a pardon.

Other Options

In California, you may also seek a pardon or clemency. A pardon forgives the offense but the record remains, while clemency reduces criminal penalties but does not clear your criminal record. These options for relief may be desirable when applying for work, getting a loan, or seeking employment.

Contact Mark Waecker

You can file for expungement on your own, however, it is an intricate process. Working with an experienced defense attorney is invaluable to ensure the process is completed properly. Many of Mark Waecker’s clients have sought his legal guidance immediately following an arrest, while still incarcerated. Those clients use the clock to their advantage, as time is still on their side. Acting quickly and efficiently, Mark Waecker will use assertive strategies to get the best results possible in your case.

Mark has a proven consistent track record for success in the fastest and most efficient way possible.
Many of Mark’s clients have sought his legal guidance immediately following an arrest while still incarcerated.

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