Order of Non Disclosure and Sealing of Records FAQs
An Order of Non-Disclosure prevents certain law enforcement agencies from
releasing any records associated with your arrest, prosecution and deferred
probation sentence to the public.
With a Non Disclosure Order, your criminal records are exempt, or sealed,
from disclosure under the Public Information Act. The disclosure order also
allows you to deny the occurrence of that arrest and prosecution unless
the records are being used in subsequent criminal proceeding.
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 if 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.
You must seek sealing your record, known as an order of non disclosure,
through the courts and in appropriate time. Each case is different and
will be decided individually by the Court.
Who is eligible for an Order of
An individual who has successfully completed
deferred adjudication probation may qualify for an order of nondisclosure.
An Order of Non-disclosure, also referred to as Sealing your record is a
great way to limit the discovery of any past criminal history, you may
If granted, what does an Order of non disclosure
do for me?
If granted, an Order of non disclosure prohibits
criminal justice agencies from disclosing records to the public related
to that arrest and charge. However, be forewarned, if your particular
offense calls for a waiting period, you may lose your eligibility for
this Order if you receive a subsequent conviction or deferred adjudication,
except for traffic violations.
Aren't juvenile records automatically sealed?
There is a common misconception in Texas that records of
Juvenile offenses are secret or are automatically sealed after the
individual has reached adult status. Now due to the internet and other
sources Juvenile Records are more accessible than ever to schools,
employers and governmental agencies. Fortunately Texas law allows for
the sealing of most Juvenile offenses.
You must seek sealing of records through the courts and in appropriate
time. Each case is different and will be decided individually by the
Violation of an Order of Non Disclosure.
Persons who violate this "order" will be subject to civil sanctions
by the Attorney General's Office - a first offense will generate a
warning; subsequent violations will generate a civil penalty with a fine.