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Expungements in California

San Diego Expungement Lawyer Explains Eligibility Criteria

Did you know that it is possible, in some cases, to get your criminal record sealed or cleared? Criminal records are public, meaning that anyone can access your arrest history unless you take action to have it sealed. A criminal record can hurt your attempts to get a job or to take advantage of certain educational opportunities - but California expungement law is generous. With help from a San Diego criminal defense lawyer at San Diego Defense Pros, you may be able to have your record expunged and move on from a past mistake in order to begin rebuilding your future.

How do I obtain a California expungement?

If you were convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor, you may be eligible to have your record expunged if you completely finished your probation, face no current charges, and are not incarcerated or serving probation. You are eligible to begin the expungement process immediately after probation is completed. If you served time in state prison, your conviction cannot be expunged. In addition, some criminal offenses are not eligible for expungement, including but not limited to the following:

  • Statutory rape
  • Lewd acts with a child
  • Sodomy with a child

Once you have established that you qualify for expungement, you will need to file certain documentation with the court. There are important deadlines to observe throughout this process as well - such as the 15-day notice you are required to give your prosecutor prior to your expungement hearing. A San Diego expungement attorney from our firm can help ensure that you do not miss any of these important steps and can also accompany you to your expungement hearing.

What does an expungement mean for me?

Receiving an expungement in the state of California can protect you from numerous negative consequences and help you take advantage of opportunities that can be difficult to obtain with a criminal record. Employers in the state are prohibited from discriminating against any potential employee who has an expunged conviction or who was arrested for but not convicted of a crime. Expungement can also allow you to pursue a professional license or to preserve your immigration rights and avoid damaging your residency status.

Keep in mind when pursuing expungement, however, that there are some things that expungement will not affect. If you were convicted of a felony, for example, Penal Code § 29800 states that you may not own a firearm. Expungement will not reverse this restriction. If you must register as a sex offender in the state of California, you will still have to do so even if your record is expunged. Also, if you are charged with another crime later on, an expunged conviction can still count as grounds for stricter punishment and as a strike in accordance with California's Three Strikes Law.

Don't let a past mistake hurt your future!

Criminal records do not just disappear over time - you must take action in order to clear an old arrest, even if the charges ended up being dropped or dismissed. Begin the process of protecting your future and ensuring a better tomorrow for yourself and for your loved ones: Call San Diego Defense Pros today to set up a meeting with an experienced Southern California expungement attorney who can help walk you through this process. We understand the expungement laws in California and can help you take steps to clear or seal your old arrest history. When you schedule a free case evaluation with an experienced San Diego criminal lawyer from our firm, we can help you assess whether or not you are a candidate for expungement. Call today!

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information, and the submission of any e-mails, do not create an attorney-client relationship.
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