Record Expunction FAQs
An individual's criminal history is used by governmental agencies, schools, employers, apartments and credit agencies in an effort to judge one's
character. The discovery of your criminal history may result in you're being denied admission, employment, housing and credit. Why?
Because when the average employer or landlord discovers an applicant has been arrested, they hire someone else or turn them down. In
their mind, they do not want to be associated with someone with a criminal past.
The advantage of expunging your criminal record is a MUST, if you are eligible. Once an expunction is granted, your criminal record, including
finger prints, booking-photo, arrest report, and DPS records, are erased. So it's as if it never happened! Learn more about
record expungement relating to an arrest when
a criminal charge has been dropped. You may contact us for any
general questions on the expunging records.
Who is eligible for an expunction of records?
Legal cases resulting in dismissals,
declines, or not guilty verdicts are eligible for expungement.
How do I know if I am eligible?
If you think your criminal history contains past allegations that are
suitable for expunction, call our law office. We will be happy to evaluate your case for a nominal fee.
Is it necessary that I expunge a not guilty or dismissed case?
Contrary to what many people think, a
criminal record does not automatically seal itself or go away over time. It remains public and permanent until it is ordered sealed or expunged
by a judge.
So, even though your case was dismissed or you were found not guilty, your criminal history will show that you were
arrested and charged with a particular crime. An expunction will remove the criminal history from your record.
How long does an expunction case take?
The expunction process usually takes a few months from
start to finish, which means the system is not very responsive to individuals needing a quick fix or cleanup of their arrest record. However,
the effect of a properly expunged record is well worth the wait.
What is the end result?
Following entry of an expunction order, the release, dissemination, or use of
the expunged records and files for any purpose is prohibited. The petitioner can legally deny that the arrest ever occurred and the existence
of the expunction order.
However, when questioned under oath in a criminal proceeding about an arrest for which the records have
been expunged, the petitioner is permitted to state only that the matter in question was expunged.
Violation of an expunction order.
A person who learns of an arrest while an officer of a listed agency
and who knows of an order expunging the records and files relating to that arrest, is guilty of an offense if he knowingly releases or uses the
records or files.
Furthermore, a person who knowingly fails to return or to obliterate identifying portions of a record or file ordered
expunged is also guilty of an offense. Violating an expunction order is a Class B misdemeanor.
What can be done if I DO NOT qualify for expunction?
Even though you are not eligible for an
Expunction, if you have received or obtained a dismissal by having successfully completed a Deferred Adjudication, you may still be able
to seal your records by order of nondisclosure. Find out what your options are and get an in depth legal
order of non disclosure consolation with an experienced
Texas lawyer. An order of non disclosure will seal your criminal record. This order prevents certain law enforcement agencies from disclosing any
record associated with the arrest, prosecution and deferred probation sentence. You may then legally deny the existence of your arrest, charge
and sentence of Deferred Probation.