Expungement Law in California

When an individual that has ended up with a criminal conviction finishes out their probation, there is a sense of freedom that validates that they are on the right path. What is unfortunate, however, is the fact that a felony conviction carries many long-term consequences, even after probation and parole have been successfully completed.

It is possible for felony convictions to be expunged from a person’s criminal record. Having your record expunged is a responsible course of action and may be easier than you think, especially with an LA expungement attorney on your side. Let’s take a close look at what you need to know about expungement in California.

What does it mean to have your records expunged in California?

The courts refer to it as expungement, but in all actuality, it is more like a dismissal. When you are granted an expungement under Penal Code 1203.4, the following will take place:

  • The conviction record will be updated
  • Your “guilty” plea will be withdrawn
  • A “not guilty” plea will be entered
  • Probation records will reflect that the charge has been terminated
  • Case records will reflect the dismissal.

Following an expungement in California – is the conviction really gone?

Yes and no. Depending on the methods used to investigate whether a person has a criminal record, such as different softwares used by potential employers, the conviction may or may not be viewable. If it is viewable, though, the person conducting the research will show that the conviction was dismissed and is no longer being held against you by the court.

What are the benefits of getting a California criminal record expunged?

Having your records expunged will make it easier for you to move forward with your life without unwanted attention drawn to events that you have moved past. You won’t have to worry about indicating these details on employment applications, which in itself is already a tedious process. Also, a benefit of having your record expunged is that it may restore some of your civil rights, such as the right to bear arms and the right to vote.

What convictions are not eligible for expungement under California Law?

  • If you were convicted of certain Vehicle Code violations.
  • If you were convicted of certain sex crimes.
  • If you were sentenced to a state prison term, even if that sentence was suspended (former state prisoners should instead seek to vacate their conviction or seek a certificate of rehabilitation or pardon).

Getting Records Expunged in Los Angeles

When you decide that you would like to go through with having your record expunged, you first need to make sure that you satisfy the terms of your probation or parole. If you don’t provide the court with proof that you have successfully completed all the terms of your probation or parole, your expungement will not be granted.

In the event that you have acquired an early termination of your probation, you will need to provide the court with documentation of your early termination. Also, you must not have any pending criminal charges against you, nor can you be on probation for any other convictions or charges.

To learn more about expungement law in California, contact our law firm today.