There are many reasons why you might want to expunge or seal your juvenile record. The most common is to hide your records from prospective employers, educational institutions, and landlords who run background checks.
You may be able to get a juvenile record expunged in Illinois. Expungement of criminal records can help you to improve your life and achieve your goals. If you are considering expunging your juvenile record, you should consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney.
What is the Difference Between Sealing and Expunging?
Sealing and expunging are two different processes for dealing with criminal records. Sealing a record means that it is hidden from public view, but it can still be accessed by certain people, such as law enforcement and judges. Expunging a record means that it is erased and cannot be seen by anyone, including employers and most government agencies. However, if you were to commit future offenses, law enforcement may still have access to your records.
Am I Eligible for Expungement?
Not all juvenile records are eligible for expungement or sealing. In Illinois, police expunge all law enforcement records before your 18th birthday if:
It has been at least one year since you were arrested or had any other interaction with law enforcement
The court never filed a delinquency or criminal petition against you
It has been at least six months since you were last arrested or had a delinquency or criminal petition filed against you
Your record was created after January 1, 2000
Charges not eligible for automatic expungement or petition to expunge include:
Felony first-degree murder
Sex offenses requiring registration
How to Expunge Your Juvenile Record
To expunge or seal your juvenile record in Illinois, you must file a petition with the court. Steps to follow include:
Filing paperwork with the local court and paying the fees
Attending a hearing, if necessary
Waiting for the court to expunge your records
You can find the necessary forms for expungement on the Illinois State Courts website. A judge will decide whether to grant your request for expungement and may or may not request a hearing. Once records are expunged, it can take up to 60 days for your juvenile criminal record to be cleared.
Contact an Elgin, IL Criminal Defense Attorney
Once your records are expunged, they will be erased from public view. This means that employers, most government agencies, and the general public will not be able to see them. Those not eligible for expungement may still be able to have their records sealed. For more information on what steps you can take, consult an Aurora, IL expungements attorney. [[title]] can help you determine your eligibility and work with you to get your record cleared. Call [[phone]] to begin the process with a free consultation.