Having a criminal history is difficult obstacle to overcome in life. Even after serving your sentence, the conviction lingers. It can make it difficult to find an apartment or get a job. It can even affect college applications! Fortunately, you can have your record expunged.
This means that all police and court records of the charges are removed from your record and sealed. This can be extremely beneficial in life. So how do you get an expungement? You start by hiring the bests expungement lawyer in Alexandria.[Related: Best Criminal Defense Lawyer]
Virginia Expungement Laws
If the charges against you were dismissed or dropped by the prosecutor, you are entitled to an expungement. However, if you plead guilty for a deferred finding, then you are not entitled to expungement.
Furthermore, if your name or identification was used improperly by a person charged/arrested for the crime, you can petition for expungement.
Also, if you receive a full pardon then you are entitled to an expungement. Not all convictions are eligible for expungement. However, once a record is expunged it cannot be viewed by employers, landlords, colleges/universities etc.
Procedure for Expungement
The procedure for expunging a record is a long process. It begins when the petition is filed.
However, this must be done in the circuit court for the community where the original chargers were made. Expungement can be granted if the person charged falls into one of the following categories.
- Not guilty verdict in a contempt of court charge arising in a civil case
- Granted an absolute pardon
- Charges resulted from the theft of the accused person’s identity
- Acquitted after trial
- Prosecutors drop/dismiss charges
Expungement of a misdemeanor is usually granted if the person falls into one of these categories and has no other record of convictions. However, expunging a felony charge can be more difficult. The person who files the petition must prove that it would be unjust for the court to deny the request. For more on expungement laws, see Virginia Code 19.2-392.2.
Expunging Juvenile Offenses
Virginia law has special requirements for juvenile offenders. So, criminal records of juvenile offenders are automatically sealed when they reach age 19. Granted it has been five years since their last court hearing.
In addition, this law applies even if the juvenile admitted to the alleged acts. Consequently, this record sealing has the same effect as expungement.
Expungement Lawyer Alexandria
Having a criminal record is a heavy burden. If you are ready to apply for expungement, you need an expungement lawyer to help you. Contact King Campbell Poretz Mitchell today to discuss your case.
Our expert attorneys have extensive knowledge and experience with expungements.