Record expungement of a felony is the best way a person can hide his or her felony records, which can be beneficial when looking for employment or protecting information about yourself. Although the felony record may still be available to some agencies such as immigration, your records will be safe from most people who’ll try to background check you.
However, this is not an easy process; in fact, some records are not even allowed for record expungement. You must be prepared to give all your effort if you really are determined to do this.
Though record expungement is very tedious, and sometimes exasperating, it will still be to your advantage in the long run and pursuing it is something that you should never give up on.
Here are the steps in order to be successful. However you need to understand that these guidelines should not be misinterpreted as legal advice. They are merely loose guidelines in order to give you a good idea on what will be necessary.
STEP 1: COMPLETE YOUR SENTENCE
It is important that you first serve your sentence before applying for the process. If you have multiple charges, you may serve the jail time for each charge either simultaneously or consecutively. However, if you have been given parole, or were released at an earlier time, you are considered to have served your time and are eligible for record expungement.
STEP 2: COMPLETE YOUR PROBATION
Some people do not have to serve jail time but have to serve probation instead. Other times, felons who have served their time have to undergo a few months or years under probation where he is regularly checked by a probation officer.
If you are under probation you need to complete it. The completion may include the regular visit to the courtroom, paying back of fines, paying of restitution, community service and more. You have to clearly finish all these responsibilities at the time of probation before you can become eligible.
STEP 3: MAINTAIN GOOD BEHAVIOR
After probation, you need to maintain good behavior for at least 3 to 4 more years. Avoid any criminal behavior or involvement. Never even risk getting caught driving under the influence. Understand that in order for your record to be expunged, you need to bring back the trust of the community and the court. This is not a fast process and patience is certainly a virtue you have to learn and live by. Try to find work and join an organization which may help in your rehabilitation as well as your record expungement.
STEP 4: APPEAL TO THE COURT FOR YOUR RECORD EXPUNGEMENT
You can appeal to the court to have your record expunged. You need proof of your good behavior. Outline your good behavior, your employment and every step you made to re-integrate yourself into society. Ensure to the court that you will never break the law again.
STEP 5: WAIT
Record expungement can take a long time so you need to have patience to wait for the judge’s decision. If you have proven to the judge that you have made all the necessary efforts, you will surely have your record expunged.
Record expungement will allow an ex-felon to protect himself from any negative effect of having criminal records. This does not mean that the court decision of your guilt is annulled; it only protects your records from unnecessary people. You may ask the professional help of a private lawyer to give you more detailed and better advise on record expungement.