A criminal record can lead to frustrating complications related to loans, housing, travel, employment and other crucial needs. The Code of Criminal Procedure explains how record expunction works: You may be able to remove your arrest record entirely from existence if you were not convicted. Alternatively, you may qualify for deferred adjudication if you were found guilty. This would make your arrest record inaccessible to the public.
Many people mistakenly assume that a dismissal of charges automatically removes a criminal record or seals it after completing deferred adjudication probation. However, the arrest record is still publically available to financial institutions, potential proprietors and prospective employers.
If you would like to seal or expunge your criminal record, then The Law Offices of Robert Gregg may be able to help. Mr. Gregg is a Dallas criminal lawyer who can determine if you may qualify for expunction or deferred adjudication. To schedule a consultation, call our office today at (214) 891-7536.
Until then, read on to learn the answers to seven FAQs about criminal record expunction in Texas:
- Do deferred adjudication cases qualify?
You can seal your record if your case includes a felony conviction. The same is true of Class A and Class B misdemeanors. However, Class C misdemeanor cases are eligible for criminal record expungement.
- Do deferred prosecution cases qualify?
If you agreed to a plea bargain inclusive of deferred prosecution, then it is likely that your case resulted in dismissal. If so, then you can apply for expunction after completing the required diversion program.
- What is the difference between non-disclosure and expunction?
Non-disclosure makes your record invisible to the public and, as with expunction, gives you legal authority to deny it, but it still exists for authorized view. Expunction deletes your record completely.
- Am I eligible if I pled no contest or guilty?
It is an admission of guilt to plead no contest, and the law recognizes it as such. Unless the relevant authorities pardon you, a conviction is not eligible for either expunction or non-disclosure.
- Do straight probation cases qualify?
The law considers straight probation cases to be convictions, which automatically disqualifies you for expunction and non-disclosure. Judicial clemency is available if you are still serving probation.
- How do other cases affect eligibility?
Previous convictions – even small traffic fines – may harm your eligibility. If you break any laws during the post-discharge period, then you might not qualify for non-disclosure.
- How long must I wait to apply for expunction or non-disclosure?
The length of time that you must wait depends on the nature of the crime. Shorter timeframes accompany less-serious offenses.
An old arrest record should not affect your chances of finding employment or housing. With the help of a criminal attorney, it may be possible to expunge your record or remove it from public availability. If you would like to discuss your options with a lawyer, call The Law Offices of Robert Gregg at (214) 891-7536 for a free initial consultation