Having a criminal record can influence nearly every aspect of a person’s life. If you were previously arrested and charged with a crime, you may have already experienced the repercussions of having a criminal record. Finding employment, housing, and educational opportunities is much harder when you have a record. It can also be embarrassing or downright infuriating to be judged by other people who do not know the circumstances surrounding the criminal allegations against you.
Fortunately, individuals in this situation may be able to clear their names by getting their records expunged. If successful, an expunged record will no longer appear on background checks and employers will not be able to see past criminal charges. Expunging your record can be a powerful way to start anew and put the past behind you.
Illinois Expungement Requirements
Record expungement completely erases any record of an arrest or criminal charge. The charge cannot be viewed by anyone once it is expunged. However, only certain records may be expunged. You can erase a record if:
Your arrest did not result in criminal charges
The criminal charges were dropped or dismissed
You successfully completed probation or court supervision
You were found “not guilty” or acquitted of the offense
Your conviction was vacated
If you qualify for expungement, you can erase your record by filing a petition for expungement with the Circuit Clerk in the county where you were arrested or charged with the offense. If you do not qualify for expungement, do not panic. You may still be able to seal your record.
Record Sealing in Illinois
Convictions cannot typically be expunged, but they may be able to be sealed. When a record is sealed, it is hidden from view of most people. The Illinois State Police and other law enforcement agencies can still see the record, but employers cannot. Sealing your record can be a great way to prevent employers or friends and family from seeing past convictions. In Illinois, many misdemeanor crimes are eligible for expungement. However, certain offenses, including driving under the influence, are not eligible for record sealing.
Contact our DuPage County Record Sealing and Expungement Lawyer
Even an arrest that never resulted in criminal charges creates a criminal record. If you are like many people with charges or convictions on your record, you are interested in putting the past behind you and clearing your name. Our Wheaton expungement lawyers can help you determine the best way to do so. Call [[title]] at [[phone]] to set up a free consultation.