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New Jersey Marijuana Expungement Attorney

Marijuana Expungement Lawyer in Cherry Hill, NJ Advocates for Clients Through the Complicated Marijuana Expungement Process in Burlington County, Camden County, Gloucester County, and Throughout NJ

Disclosing the fact that you have been convicted of or charged with a marijuana-related offense in the past can be embarrassing, and in worst-case scenarios, it can jeopardize your eligibility for opportunities in employment, housing, and even education. The unfortunate fact remains that many will judge you for past indiscretions even if those indiscretions don’t accurately reflect your character today. Importantly, you can never fully anticipate how a potential employer, landlord, or other relevant parties will react to your disclosure of a past marijuana-related offense. Skilled New Jersey marijuana expungement attorney Michele Finizio will advocate on your behalf every step of the way in obtaining your marijuana expungement, and help you navigate the complex and changing laws governing marijuana expungements in New Jersey so that you can move forward with your life.

The laws governing marijuana possession and use throughout the country are changing rapidly—but although many people no longer even consider marijuana use to be illegal, technically, the laws governing marijuana possession, use, and distribution remain in flux, and opinions can vary dramatically with respect to past marijuana use. Moving forward into the future, the relevant question will now require examining and evaluating how past marijuana offenses will be treated under New Jersey law.  

The path toward obtaining expungement for a marijuana-related offense can be much more complicated than you might initially think, so it is critical to retain an experienced criminal defense attorney to advocate on your behalf throughout the entire expungement process. One single misstep in completing New Jersey’s formal requirements for expungement can result in the dismissal of your petition entirely. Call today to see how experienced New Jersey marijuana expungement attorney Michele Finizio can help you clear your criminal record of marijuana-related charges and give you a clean slate for the future.

New Jersey Marijuana Expungement Process is Detailed and Complex

New Jersey Marijuana Expungement Attorney

Marijuana expungements in New Jersey have become less difficult after the Marijuana Decriminalization Law came into effect on July 1st, 2021.

To increase accessibility and speed in the expungement process, the New Jersey Courts created an electronic filing system.

It permits the creation and filing of petitions for a conventional, clean slate, and marijuana-related expungements by attorneys and self-represented litigants. Additionally, it offers practical new features like simpler access to state records databases, the ability to create petitions for expungements, and the ability to serve applications on several parties automatically.

Through the New Jersey Court’s Self-Help Center (“Submit Expungement Petition Online” under “COVID-19 Self-Help Resources”), anyone can set up an account.

You must enter a municipal or superior court case number to begin. The system will then search criminal, municipal, and family court databases for your court records. It is advised that you collect your records before beginning the process because the system cannot be relied upon to return all of your expungable cases. (Refer to LSNJ’s Clearing Your Record Manual’s “Locate Your Records” section.)

After completing the petition you will be able to:

  • Enter any additional information that was missed by the database of the expungement system;
  • review and submit supplementary or supporting files; and
  • Which cases should be listed on the suggested final order can be selected or deselected.
  • If necessary, the system will automatically generate a hearing order and send the required paperwork to the relevant parties. If a final order of expungement is made, it will also serve those parties and give the petitioner a copy of the order.

Although the website offers general information, it cannot tell you whether you qualify for expungement. As a result, it is advised that you get legal or advocacy advice before using the system, as well as make use of other tools for determining your eligibility, like LSNJ’s Clearing Your Record Online eligibility interview.

The prosecutor’s office will consider your petition after you submit your expungement petition. If the office decides you are not qualified for expungement, it may oppose you. Any challenges put forth by the prosecutor’s office will be given to you for a reply.

Whether or not you are qualified to expunge marijuana-related convictions using New Jersey’s new electronic filing system, these latest reforms should make it simpler for you to erase your records and start over.

Current Requirements for Obtaining Expungement of Marijuana-Related Charges in South Jersey

Certain marijuana and hashish-related charges have to be expunged in accordance with the Marijuana Decriminalization Law. As a result, the Supreme Court mandated the expungement of thousands of cases.

If your case contains only one of these three infractions, the courts have deleted the cases of anyone found guilty or declared delinquent:

  • N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5 (b)(12) – Distribution of hashish weighing little more than 5 grams or less than 1 ounce
  • N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10 (a)(3) – Having more than 50 grams of marijuana or 5 grams of hashish in your possession
  • Possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana or 5 grams of hashish is prohibited by New Jersey statute 2C:35-10(a)(4).

Additionally, several marijuana and hashish cases have been cleared by the courts. The case was expunged if only one of the offenses listed above AND any of the offenses listed below were present:

  • Possession of Drug Paraphernalia (N.J.S.A. 2C:36-2)
  • Use or Consumption of a Controlled, Dangerous Substance, N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(b)
  • Failure to Make Lawful Disposal of Controlled, Dangerous Substance, N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(c)

Additionally, instances involving attempts and conspiracies to commit any of the aforementioned offenses were purged by the courts.

Skilled Marijuana Expungement Lawyer Helps Clients Navigate the Evolving Legal System in South Jersey

Although there is no formal legal requirement that you obtain legal representation in pursuing your right to a marijuana expungement, the process of obtaining that expungement can be difficult and present many opportunities for mistakes. You are required to satisfy each and every requirement that applies in a marijuana expungement case, and those requirements may vary depending on the prosecutor involved.

Although preparing the necessary expungement documentation on your own, or hiring a low-cost document preparation service to complete the paperwork, may seem appealing, retaining the counsel of an experienced marijuana expungement lawyer who will fight for your rights can both smooth the process and increase the odds that your expungement petition will be granted.

A skilled New Jersey marijuana expungement attorney, Michele Finizio, will advocate on your behalf every step of the way in obtaining your marijuana expungement. She will help you navigate the complex and changing laws governing marijuana expungements in New Jersey so that you can move forward with your life.

Contact a Hard-Hitting Criminal Defense Lawyer to Schedule a Free Initial Consultation Discuss the Possibility of Obtaining a Marijuana Expungement in Your Case Today

Although the laws governing marijuana use and possession are evolving throughout the country, the stigma that often surrounds criminal conviction that shows up on a background check remains intact.   

If you have been arrested or convicted for marijuana-related charges in Southern New Jersey in the past, call today or submit this online contact form to schedule a free and confidential consultation to explore the possibility of expungement with experienced New Jersey marijuana expungement attorney Michele Finizio.

Frequently Asked Questions About Marijuana Expungements in Southern New Jersey

What happens once my record has been expunged?  Can an employer see that I was convicted of a marijuana-related offense?  

No.  After your expungement has been granted, your record will not actually be destroyed, but it will be sealed from the public, and you can legally say that you have never been convicted of a crime.  After you receive confirmation from the state police that your marijuana offense was removed from all relevant databases, you will no longer have any obligation to inform a potential employer, potential landlord, educational institution, or anyone else that you were convicted of, or charged with, the crime that was expunged. New Jersey law actually prohibits a potential employer from asking you whether you have any expunged criminal record.

Will I have to appear in court again to obtain a marijuana expungement in New Jersey?  

In many cases, you will not have to appear in court to obtain a marijuana expungement, especially if the marijuana-related offense was your first and only criminal conviction. The need to appear in court may arise if the prosecutor objects to the expungement or additional complications arise in your case, but it is possible to obtain the expungement without going to court.

What if I was convicted of distributing marijuana and my offense does not become legal under New Jersey law?  

Distribution of hashish weighing little more than 5 grams or less than 1 ounce will be expunged.

If you have been convicted of breaking N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5(11) by distributing more than one ounce but less than five pounds of marijuana or more than five grams but less than one pound of hashish, you can get your record cleared after three years.

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