If you were charged with a criminal offense, it’s in your best interest to explore whether or not you may be eligible for an expungement. An expungement allows you to have some or all of the crimes you are accused of to be effectively erased from your record.
This means it can no longer affect your employment prospects, finances, and other aspects of daily life. Here are several examples of what makes someone eligible for an expungement and how to get strong legal support when you’re up against the seemingly impossible.
A Judge Dismissed the Charges
Case dismissals can be a favorable outcome for defendants, because it allows them the expungement of their criminal records. However, you should be aware of what type of dismissal you received, since this will influence how easy or difficult it will be to get your records expunged. One type of dismissal — with prejudice — means your case is closed permanently. The other — dismissal without prejudice — means your case can be reopened. The latter records are generally more challenging to seal.
They Received No Charges from the Court
Even if you are arrested, you may not actually be charged with any crimes. For example, you may be taken into police custody for a criminal offense but later let go after discovering you were not the person the police were looking for. Many people mistakenly assume this means there will be no record of the arrest, but this isn’t true. You’ll need to file a motion to have them expunged.
They Appealed and a Higher Court Reversed the Decision of the Lower Court
If you are convicted of a crime, you may think that expungement is off the table. However, you do have the right to file an appeal, which is a request that a higher court review the actions of the court that tried you to determine whether or not anything was out of line. If the appeals court decides the trial was unfair, compromised, or lacked substantial evidence, they can require the original court to retry you or dismiss your case. Then, you may be eligible to expunge or seal those records.
Call Today for Zealous Legal Support After Being Criminally Charged
Don’t delay after a criminal conviction to get legal help filing an appeal and working to clear your record. Contact Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer Chad Lewin for an appointment at (800) 458-1488.