According to the American Bar Association, “‘expungement’ is the process by which a record of criminal conviction is destroyed or sealed from state or federal records. An expungement order directs the court to treat the criminal conviction as if it had never occurred, essentially removing it from a defendant’s criminal record as well as, ideally, the public record.” If you are interested in ways to expunge a Missouri criminal record, keep reading.
In 2018, the Missouri expungement bill (SB 588) went into effect to allow an individual to petition courts to expunge old criminal convictions. Because there are necessary steps to follow, you need an experienced criminal defense lawyer like Scott Hamblin to assist you.
Beginning the Process: Expunge a Missouri Criminal Record
Step One: Does your crime qualify?
Many crimes are ineligible for expungement. Some that do not qualify are class A felonies, any offense requiring registration as a sex offender, and a felony conviction for kidnapping.
It is possible to expunge records of many non-Class A felonies and misdemeanors, and most juvenile records qualify for expungement.
Merely figuring out which offenses qualify for expungement and which don’t require an attorney can involve some research. Because there have been several changes to the list of crimes that can be expunged, you need Scott Hamblin, attorney at law, to first review your criminal record and determine if there is a possibility of expungement.
Step Two: Completion of Your Sentence
Before proceeding with expungement, an individual must pay off any fines or complete any probation periods. There are also waiting periods such as seven years conviction-free for a felony offense and three years for a misdemeanor. First-time, alcohol-related misdemeanor offenses may be expunged after ten years.
A pending charge or outstanding warrant disqualifies the petitioner. The court may also examine your habits and conduct during your sentence to ensure you are no longer a threat to society. To determine if you have met the required waiting periods, accurately paid your fines, and have the necessary qualifications, Scott carefully reviews your case and requirements for your particular offense.
Step Three: Trust Scott Hamblin
As a former prosecuting attorney, Scott Hamblin knows everything the prosecution has to do to be successful in its role. Whether you’re looking to have a criminal record expunged in order to obtain different employment or you just wish to restore your good name, Scott has a thorough knowledge of criminal law and the aggressive presence in court you’ll need to make your case.
If you qualify, Scott can file a petition for expungement in the county court where you were charged or found guilty. In addition, he’ll assist you in gathering the records you’re required to submit and then fight for you in a court of law.
For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact the law office of Scott Hamblin today.