Can I Get My Felony Expunged?
What is Expungement?Before talking about the likeliness of getting your crime expunged, first you should know what expungement is. According to Nolo.com, “Expungement refers to the process of sealing arrest and conviction records.” Most states allow you to expunge convictions and arrests from your record, but some states do not, for example, New York.
After a person had been convicted of a felony, there can be consequences, like they may find it hard to get a job. Expungement is a chance for a person to reduce their felony charge to misdemeanor charge or to have their crime completely erased from their record. In order for you to begin this process, there are two elements that must be satisfied according to the California Penal Code 17 (b). They are 1) The underlying offense must be a wobbler and 2) The person’s probation must have been granted.
A criminal defense attorney can appeal to the court to reduce a person’s felony conviction at the end of the probation period. The judge considers factors on whether to grant to reduce the felony to a misdemeanor.
Can My Crime Be Expunged?There are factors that are taken into account when a judge decides to expunge someone’s crime. A couple of these factors include the nature of the crime or charge, how long it has been since the crime, the jurisdiction, and the person’s criminal history. The expungement process can be complicated if you have never done it before, and to ensure that you take the necessary steps in order to get your crime removed from your record, it is very smart to hire an attorney who has a lot of experience.
Benefits of an ExpungementThere are 4 main benefits of expungement.
- Getting a Job- This can be one of the things that affectd domeone the most if theyhave a record. Most employers do a background check before hiring someone and having a criminal history will hold them back. If someone gets their conviction expunged, they can lawfully answer “no” if asked if they have been convicted of a crime.
- Getting a Loan- Just as employers, loan agencies frequently do a background check. Some think that a criminal conviction may lead to them not being able to fulfill their financial obligations. Because of this a person witha record could face excessively high interest rates or receive no loan at all.
- State Licenses/Professional Organizations: Having a conviction on record can cause it to be difficult or impossible to get a state license (such as a real estate or contractors license). It can also be hard to join professional organizations because they do background checks before inviting someone to join or hold a position in an organization.
- Peace of Mind- Although the other benefits are great, perhaps the greatest benefit of expungement is the relief of knowing that you have a clear record. While this does not magically erase the past, a lot of times this can help someone begin to move on from their crime and bring closure to a hard time in their life.