If you have a criminal record, you know that it can have a negative impact on your life. It may make it harder to find a job, for example, or limit your options for schooling.
The thing you should remember is that it is sometimes possible to have your record expunged. Expunction is when your criminal record is sealed. The public will no longer be able to see those offenses, because they are made private by the court.
Why would you want to seal your criminal record?
There are many reasons why people choose to seal their criminal records. Some actions that are made easier by doing so include:
- Getting a professional license
- Getting into graduate school
- Finding a new job
- Renting an apartment
- Buying a home
Beneficially, expunging your record means that the public won’t see the past offenses and won’t be able to use them against you when you apply for those things.
Can you have your charges expunged in North Carolina?
Since December 2017, people in North Carolina have been able to seal their criminal records in some cases. For example, if you have a history with a nonviolent misdemeanor, you now only have to wait five years before having the record sealed.
Another thing to remember is that those who have a nonviolent felony on their records (first offense) may ask for expungement after 10 years.
In the past, there was a limit on how many acquitted or dismissed charges you could expunge, but that is no longer the case.
Can all offenses be expunged?
No, not all offenses can be expunged. Certain offenses, such as drug offenses and DWIs, may or may not be allowed to be expunged depending on the circumstances of the case. Your attorney can go over your case with you and let you know if it could be eligible for expungement in the future. There may be other options available to you if your particular convictions cannot be expunged.
The process for expunging records is not always simple, so it’s a good idea to review your case with your attorney before you decide to pursue expungement.