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Who Qualifies for Expungement?


Note: This blog has been updated to reflect new expungement law enacted on October 29, 2018.

Have you heard of an expungement? Do you know what it can do for you or someone you love after a conviction? Sadly, not many people understand what an expungement is or that it even exists. For those who do know of it, though, they must also be aware of eligibility requirements.

While the idea of expungement is great—being able to seal a criminal record from public view—there are some important factors that need to be considered. Most important of all: not everyone qualifies for expungement and it’s limited to certain eligibility requirements.

It used to be that you could only apply for expungement if you only had one felony, one felony and one misdemeanor, or up to two misdemeanor convictions. However, the law was recently updated so that you can have up to five felony charges expunged and unlimited misdemeanors.

These requirements are still subject to disqualification from expungement based on various serious crimes.

Who Doesn’t Qualify?

Any First, Second or Third Degree Felony

If someone is convicted of a first, second, or third-degree felony, they may not be eligible for expungement upon release. This includes those convicted of serious crimes such as murder, rape, kidnapping, or abduction.

Note: You can still try to have a third-degree felony expunged under the old rule so long as you meet those requirements (you do not have more than conviction felony conviction or more than one felony and one misdemeanor).

Any Crime In Which a Mandatory Prison Term Is Sentenced

Some offenses carry a mandatory prison sentence upon conviction. Should the accused receive this sentencing, the record will not be eligible for expungement and will remain available to various organizations and parties.

Sexual Offenses Involving Minors

Sexual offenses disqualify someone from seeking expungement. It may be possible to apply for expungement for a sexual crime under the old rule, but not if the crime involved a minor.

Violent Crimes

When someone is convicted of a violent crime such as sexual battery, rape, aggravated assault, or domestic violence, they may not be eligible to have their records expunged.

At The Meranda Law Firm LTD, we have a strong understanding of expungements and how they are handled. We know what needs to be shown to seek expungement and the aspects of the situation of which you need to be aware. Trust our knowledgeable expungement attorneys in Columbus to defend your rights.

Call us today to discuss your situation.