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Posted on in Expungement

Expungement, Elgin criminal defense attorneyIf you have ever been arrested on the suspicion of a crime, your arrest becomes part of your permanent criminal record, even if you never convicted. Potential employers, financial institutions, and even educational admissions officers could conduct background checks when you apply for a job, loan, or school program. Even just a single arrest in your history could lead to uncomfortable conversations and embarrassing questions long after the incident itself has been all but forgotten. Depending on how your case was resolved, however, your arrest may qualify to be expunged or removed from your permanent record. Thanks to a new law that became effective this year, more individuals than ever before could be eligible to restore lost opportunities by clearing their record.

What Is Expungement?

When an arrest is expunged, it means that all physical and digital records related to that arrest and subsequent prosecution are destroyed, deleted, or otherwise rendered inaccessible. An expunged arrest essentially never happened, and the arrest cannot be seen on background checks conducted for any purpose. Removing an arrest from one’s record can obviously be a tremendous help to that person’s future.

In Illinois, an arrest is only eligible to be expunged if it did not result in a conviction. An expungement may also be possible for certain arrests that resulted in court supervision or probation, as long as the requirements set forth have been successfully completed.

Old Law vs. New Law

Prior to 2017, the law in Illinois prohibited individuals with a prior conviction from seeking an expungement for any other arrest. This meant that if you had ever been convicted of a crime—other than a minor traffic offense—you could never have any other arrests expunged. Your application would be immediately rejected. As one might expect, this limitation eliminated expungement as an option for thousands of people, many of whom may have committed their indiscretion decades ago.

Beginning this year, however, the application requirements were amended to allow individuals with prior convictions to seek an expungement. Of course, the other eligibility criteria must still be met, and the expungement will not apply to the offense that resulted in the conviction.

Let Us Help

If you have questions about getting an arrest permanently removed from your criminal record, an experienced Kane County expungement attorney can help you explore your options. We will review your case and work with you in determining your eligibility for restoring future opportunities. Call 847-488-0889 for a free consultation today.

Source:

https://www.illinois.gov/osad/Expungement/Pages/Expungement-and-Sealing-General-Information.aspx

Last modified on

Posted on in Expungement

criminal history, background, Elgin expungement attorneyIf you have ever been arrested, regardless of the outcome, details of the arrest are probably still on your criminal record. Even if your criminal history can be summarized by "college kids doing stupid college stuff" and you were never convicted, prospective employers and other entities may find the records during a routine background check, potentially causing you problems that you never saw coming. Fortunately, there is an option available to many individuals that can help provide a fresh start, allowing them to put the past behind them once and for all.

Get a Copy of Your Rap Sheet

Many believe that the term rap sheet originated as an acronym for a Record of Arrest and Prosecution sheet. It seems, however, that the reverse is actually true, and that the phrase developed from street slang, and convenient acronym was, in a manner of speaking, retrofitted. Whatever the origin, it is important to be aware of every item on your criminal history. To do so, you will need to request a copy of all applicable rap sheets, including from local, state, and federal agencies, depending on your circumstances.

While you should certainly consult with your attorney in the process, you will be required to appear on your own behalf to receive a copy of your rap sheet from local police departments. If you have ever appeared in court or entered a plea in any case, it is also important to get a copy of all dispositions. You should also contact the Illinois State Police to review your records from across the state.

Review Your Record Carefully

Once you have obtained a copy of all of your available arrest records, go over them in fine detail to ensure they are completely accurate. Be sure that all of the included details actually represent what took place and when. If your record contains entries that you know or strongly to believe to be inaccurate, notify your attorney immediately to learn more about your options in getting them removed.

Expungement or Record Sealing

If your criminal history contains arrests and no convictions, including guilty pleas, you are probably eligible to have your record expunged. Expungement may also be available for certain misdemeanor convictions, but the exceptions are very limited. When your records are expunged, they are completely removed from your background and any paper files are physically destroyed by court order. Employers and others conducting background checks will no longer be able to find any trace of expunged arrests.

For those who do not qualify for expungement, record sealing may be an option. Those who have been previously convicted of crimes may be able to have their criminal records sealed. While not as thorough as expungement, record sealing makes the details of your arrests and convictions available only to law enforcement and other related agencies. Employers and private individuals will not be able to see the contents of your record.

To learn more about expungement and record sealing in Illinois, contact an Elgin criminal defense attorney today. At the The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola, we have helped many clients create a more promising future for themselves, despite the existence of a criminal history. Call 847-488-0889 to schedule a free consultation at one of our two convenient office locations. We look forward to serving you.

Sources:

http://www.illinoislegalaid.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=home.dsp_content&contentID=4926

http://www.saferfoundation.org/files/documents/HowtoObtainConvictionRecord.pdf

http://www.illinois.gov/osad/expungement/documents/crinminal%20exp%20guide/expungementsealingoverview.pdf

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Avvo Illinois State Bar Association Kane COunty Bar Association
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