If you have ever been convicted of a crime you know how much a criminal record can hinder your life in many different ways. In this article you will find a starting point on how to begin the process of clearing your criminal record.
*Note: Successfully clearing your criminal record does not mean the criminal history will never be found. For example: if someone has stored this information in a national or multistate database prior to your record being cleared, the criminal record may still be found. It is uncommon and in very few cases that criminal records are wiped out or completely removed and destroyed.
What should be considered before calling the county in which the offense took place:
- How many crimes were committed? How many counts of each crime?
- The final disposition of each charge?
- Time in between each crime committed
- Where did the offense happen, which jurisdiction?
- Where did the case go to trial?
- Where is the criminal record recorded?
- Dates of Convictions, Acquittals, or discharge
- The dates all sentence, parole, or probation requirements were completed
There are a number of different agencies including but not limited to: Federal, State, County, or Local. You need to find out which agencies have recorded information about you. This will be a process in which legal counsel may be necessary. Once completed employers will most likely use the revised disposition when making a hiring decision.
Every state and jurisdiction may have a different set of guidelines such: Type of offense, time passed since conviction, pending criminal charges, was the crime against a person, etc.
Upon qualifying and receiving an expungement or sealed criminal record, you will need to keep proof of this readily available. In the event someone is able to find your criminal history, proof of the revised disposition will be needed.