The Benefits of Expungement
Has a criminal record been holding you back from moving forward with your life? If you have a record, there are many ways in which it can hurt you. You may find it impossible to get the job you always wanted, or to get the professional license for which you were studying. You might find your ideal home on the real estate market, but then get turned down for the home loan. If this is your situation, it’s time to think about expungement in New Jersey. Expungement is the sealing of a criminal record so that the public no longer has access to it. This means that you can go to a job interview, and when the employer asks, “Do you have a criminal record?” you can honestly answer, “No.”
Filing a Petition For Expungement
In order to get an expungement, you have to meet the eligibility requirements and then file a petition with your local criminal court. The process of filling out the paperwork can be complicated and a bit tricky, so you need an attorney to help you make sure you get it right, or it can be rejected. If you committed a felony and have not committed any further crimes for ten years or so (and in some cases, even earlier), you may be eligible. It helps a lot if you have certain other things going for you like a stable job, a good reputation in the community or further education. If you committed violent crimes that would not normally be eligible for expungement (like the sale of heroin) but were a victim of human trafficking, you may still be eligible for expungement of the crime from your record.
Records That Cannot Be Expunged
There are some types of criminal records that cannot be expunged. Any type of violent crime, such as kidnapping or murder, will remain on your record forever. Sex crimes such as rape or sexual offenses that involve a minor also cannot be expunged and you cannot be removed from the Sex Offender Registry. Possession of amounts of controlled substance drugs that are large enough to imply that you were selling cannot be expunged from your record. However, many cannabis-related offenses may be expunged now that the laws regulating marijuana have changed in many states. Also, some crimes that are normally not expunged may be expunged if the offender was a juvenile at the time the crime was committed.
Who May Access Your Expunged Record
Even after you obtain expungement of a criminal record, there are still certain parties that may access your expunged record. The U.S. Military has access to your records, and law enforcement officials may obtain access to them under certain circumstances. You may still be able to enlist for military service, but that will be up to the recruiter. However, renters, employers, universities you may apply to, and the general public will not be able to see your record. This will give you a greater chance of moving on with your life.
Contact an Experienced Moorestown Criminal Defense Lawyer About Your Expungement in New Jersey
Were you arrested or charged with a criminal charge in New Jersey? The consequences of a conviction could be severe, leaving you with a permanent criminal record and possibly even sending you to jail. That is why you need to speak with a qualified criminal defense attorney as soon as possible about your case who can help you with expungements. The Law Offices of Michele Finizio have successfully represented clients charged with a crime in Camden, Cherry Hill, Medford, and Pemberton, and throughout New Jersey. Call 609-230-0374 or fill out the online contact form to schedule a consultation with a member of our legal team. We have an office conveniently located at 9 E. Main St., Moorestown, NJ 08057.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.