A criminal charge can bring with it more punishments than just jail time. Individuals who have a criminal record may find it difficult to find a job, locate housing — especially after returning from jail — and access many other important services. This isn’t to mention a direct hit to one’s reputation that can occur following a criminal charge.
Many people are unaware of the fact that they can criminal charges removed from their record after a certain period of time, through a process called expunction. Through this process, the charges are removed, and an individual’s life becomes easier. Barriers to finding employment, housing, and receiving a loan are removed.
If you or a loved one has a criminal record, you may be entitled to an expunction. Keep reading to learn more about the process and the qualifications. It may just end up changing your life!
Something to Keep in Mind…
The qualifications for expunction vary for a state to state and depending on the crimes that you have been charged with. Make sure that you are familiar with the expunction rules in your state before beginning to process.
This blog post will focus on the expunction process in Texas. If you’re outside of Texas, the rules may be a little different, but there should be some general themes that follow from state to state.
Qualifications for Expunction
Not every person is eligible for expunction in the state of Texas, nor is every crime in the state of Texas eligible to be removed from your record. These, however, are some of the most common situations in which expunction may be possible:
- Arrests with a conviction
- Juvenile Offenses
Additionally, convictions in which you have been pardoned.
If you do not qualify for expunction, you may still have options. In Texas, for example, you can file a petition of nondisclosure if you have completed the deferred adjudication process. Deferred adjudication is a specific type of plea deal in which the defendant either pleads “guilty” or “no contest” to their charges, dependent on them meeting other requirements. These requirements may include community service or community supervision instead of jail time.
After the record has been sealed, only certain individuals and government agencies will be able to view it. However, this only applies to certain crimes, so it is not a guarantee.
What to Do
If you’re interested in an expunction or sealing of your records, you should reach out to an expunction attorney like Ian Inglis Attorney at Law as soon as you possibly can. An expunction attorney can let you know if you qualify for expunction or sealing of your records. In addition, they are experts on the expunction process, so if you do qualify, they will know how to begin the process.
Most legal proceedings require a multitude of paperwork, which your attorney can also help you with. You do not want your expunction to be delayed due to incorrect or misfiled paperwork, so having an attorney in your corner is the best option out there.Read More