Brownwood Texas Expunction Attorney
With the ease of access the internet provides to public records, background checks are becoming more common and are being used for everything from job and loan applications to apartment leases. If you have been charged with a crime more than likely it appears on your criminal record, even if the charges were ultimately dismissed. If this is the case, you must consider the filing of an application for expunction or application for order of nondisclosure.
Expunging your Criminal Record
An order of expunction directs law enforcement agencies to destroy all records associated with an arrest and subsequent prosecution. The effect of an expunction is to legally erase your arrest with the Court ordering that all jail records, police reports, prosecution reports and court files be destroyed. A successful petition for expunction means that you can legally deny ever having been arrested or charged with the offense. In fact, the law states that anyone with knowledge of the expunction who disseminates or uses the information can be charged with a crime.
In Texas, you are eligible to petition the Court for expunction if:
- 1. You were tried and acquitted;
- 2. You were convicted and subsequently pardoned; or
- 3. Your case was dismissed or no-billed by the Grand Jury and the applicable statute of limitations has expired.
Brownwood Texas Nondisclosure Lawyer
If you are not eligible to have your charge expunged you may qualify to petition the Court for an order of nondisclosure under Chapter 411 of the Texas Government Code. Petitions for nondisclosure are available to individuals who have successfully completed deferred adjudication probation. You are not eligible if you were placed on regular probation or were placed on deferred adjudication and later revoked and found guilty by the Court.
The difference between deferred adjudication probation and regular probation is that with a deferred adjudication, the Court places you on probation but defers any finding of guilt. Assuming you successfully complete your deferred adjudication probation, the Court never finds you guilty of the offense and the case is ultimately dismissed.
For most misdemeanor offenses, you are eligible for an order of nondisclosure immediately upon the successful completion of your probation period. With some specific sex-related misdemeanor offenses, such as indecent exposure or public lewdness having a specified waiting period during which you cannot be convicted or placed on probation for any new offense other than a traffic ticket.
For all felonies where you have successfully completed deferred adjudication probation, there is a waiting period. As with the misdemeanor waiting period, you cannot be convicted or placed on probation for any offense other than a traffic ticket during this period.
There are some specific exceptions to your right to petition the Court for an order of nondisclosure. If you were placed on deferred adjudication probation for any of the following offenses you are not eligible for an order of nondisclosure, even if you successfully completed your probation:
- Any offense that requires registration as a sex offender
- An offense where there was an affirmative finding of family violence
- Violation of a Protective Order
- Aggravated Kidnapping
- Capital Murder
- Injury to a child, elderly individual or disabled individual
- Abandoning or endangering a Child
Sealing your Prior DWI Conviction
Beginning September 1, 2017, you may be able to have your prior DWI conviction sealed. In order to be entitled there are a some requirements which include:
- 1. You must have successfully completed probation.
- 2. If so, it must have been 2 years since and you must have had a blood or breath test under a 0.15. If your test was over a 0.15 then you must wait 3 years.
- 3. You must have had an interlock for 6 months or, if no interlock, you must wait 5 years before applying.
- 4. You can not have been convicted or placed on deferred adjudication for any other crime, except traffic offenses.
If you meet these requirements, call us today and let us help you get your record cleaned up.