Wednesday, June 11, 2014

What exactly IS an expungement?

Apparently I should have made this post before the “How to do an Expungement from Beginning to End” post.  My b.

An expungement is when a Judge orders that your criminal history be erased.  Specifically, it means that the Kentucky State Police, the Administrative office of the Courts, and the Court clerk are ordered to destroy all record of a particular charge or piece of your criminal history.  So if someone tries to look up your record, anything that has been expunged, will not be found.

What gets erased: It’s important to note that only the charges that are ordered to be expunged get erased.  For example, let’s say you had a Marion County DUI conviction in 2001, and a Jefferson County Assault conviction in 2009.

If you petition the Court in Jefferson County for an expungement, the Court may grant your motion, but that doesn’t mean your record is CLEAN.  You would still have a DUI from 2001 on your record, and you would need to do a separate (and subsequent – more on that in a bit) petition for expungement in Marion County. 

The Marion County expungement would have to be done second because your record needs to be clean since the conviction you want to get expunged.  If you tried to do the Marion County case first, a Judge would say, “No – you’ve had a new assault charge since then.”  So they have to be done in order, and you have to work backwards.

It’s also important to know that a DISMISSAL does not mean EXPUNGEMENT.  If you have a good lawyer who argues your case and gets some charge dismissed, it is still on your record.  Your record would show that you were charged with that offense, and that the offense was later dismissed.  But it would still exist as a part of your record.  Dismissed does not equal erased.  Expunged equals erased.

Don’t do an expungement yourself.  It gets complicated.  Call me, Greg Simms at 502-618-4949 for a free consultation.  Expungements are relatively cheap to have done, and they can be done quickly.  So don’t hesitate to call.  My door is always open.

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