If you have been convicted of a crime, you may believe that it will stay on your record indefinitely, which can make it harder to find a job and housing. However, you may qualify for an expungement which is the process of sealing a convicted person’s criminal record.
There are several steps in the expungement process. First, you need to determine whether you are eligible for the program. You will need to complete your sentence, probation or parole before applying and you must ensure that your conviction qualifies for expungement.
You can file a petition for expungement with the court and it should include case details, information about your criminal history and reasons why the court should consider expungement. The court may schedule a hearing where you can present arguments.
The court will decide whether to grant or deny the expungement. If it is granted, the court will order that the records are expunged. You may need to notify law enforcement agencies and others to confirm that the records are sealed.
One of the significant benefits of expungement is that it can improve your chances of finding a job. This is because employers often complete background checks. It may also help you find housing, such as an apartment or house rental, because the landlord may be more likely to rent to someone without a conviction.
If you have a professional license, an expungement can help you apply for a new license or renew your existing one if a conviction would have previously been a barrier to those processes. It can also help restore your reputation in the community.