Expunging a criminal record is an important part of the criminal justice system for those convicted of a crime to be familiar with. Those who have been convicted of a crime may have questions about how they can benefit from the expunction process.
The process of expunging a criminal record involves the legal record of a criminal record or arrest being sealed through a court-ordered process. The availability of expunction and the expungement process varies by state so it is important for anyone seeking an expunction to be familiar with the rules in their state or the state where they were convicted. To be eligible for expunction, the nature of the crime or charge, the amount of time that has passed since the arrest or conviction and the individual’s criminal history will also be considered.
One of the primary benefits of the expunction process is that when someone has received a court-ordered expungement, they are typically not required any longer to disclose the criminal conviction. Examples include when the individual is filling out an employment or housing application or application for admission into an educational institution. Following an expunction, they will no longer need to disclose the criminal or arrest history when asked. In most circumstances, following an expunction, when an employer or other entity performs a background check, the individual’s criminal record will not reflect the expunged conviction or arrest.
There can be complexities associated with who can view a criminal record following an expunction which is why anyone pursuing an expungement or seeking to pursue the expungement process should be familiar with the details of the process. There are a variety of criminal defense options and protections that are part of the criminal justice system and accused individuals should be familiar with all of them including following their conviction.