Getting arrested for any crime can be devastating to your reputation, financial situation, and freedom. But even after you have served your sentence and paid your fines, a criminal record can haunt you for years. Truthfully, it can hurt you for the rest of your life. Depending on your conviction, a criminal record can prevent you from getting the job or house you want. It can keep you from obtaining custody of your children, getting auto insurance, holding a professional license, and even securing student loans.
Fortunately, in the state of Texas, some crimes can be removed from your record, essentially clearing your name and giving you the freedom to move through life without a public criminal past. An expunction and non-disclosure lawyer in Irving, TX can help you understand your rights and options. Contact the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at 214-696-9253 to see if you are eligible to have your criminal record expunged.
The Process of Expunction
In layman’s terms, expunging a criminal record means to erase proof of your arrest and associated charges. Expunction is only available in certain situations, such as if your case went to trial, but you were acquitted or pardoned by the court. If you did not go to trial, you may qualify if the following criteria apply to your case:
- You were not convicted.
- You were not charged with violating probation.
- If out on bail, you did not flee.
- You were never given probation for your offense.
- Your charges were voided or dismissed by the court.
- The statute of limitations has expired, or
- The prosecution does not require your records.
If you do not meet the above criteria, you may wish to seek non-disclosure as an alternate option. An Irving, TX expunction and non-disclosure attorney can help you determine how to proceed.
The Process of Non-Disclosure
In non-disclosure, your criminal charges do not get erased—they will remain for the purpose of certain searches, including those conducted by the courts, the police, and some government entities. But your charges do become hidden from public view. As a result, landlords and lenders, insurance companies, and most employers will be unable to see your charges.
If you were charged with a Class B or C misdemeanor, and you successfully met the terms of your probation or deferred adjudication agreement, you may qualify for a non-disclosure. If, however, your offense involved any of the actions below, you will be automatically disqualified from pursuing a non-disclosure:
- Child abandonment
- Child endangerment
- Causing injury to a child, elderly person, or someone with a disability
- Sex crimes
- Domestic violence
In addition to the criteria above, your statutory waiting period must have passed, and you must not have received any new convictions since, to qualify for non-disclosure.
The waiting period for expunction is largely dependent on the charges you are trying to have expunged.
- Felony charges: 3 years from date of arrest
- Class A and B misdemeanor charges: 1 year from date of arrest
- Class C misdemeanor charge: 6 months from date of arrest
There are some exceptions to these waiting periods, however. You may apply before the waiting period has expired if the prosecution agrees to it.
For non-disclosure orders, you must first satisfy the terms of your sentence or deferred adjudication agreement. If, however, your offense was a misdemeanor involving a violent crime or weapons violation, you must wait three years from the date of your completed sentence. Felony offenses require a 10-year waiting period.
How an Expunction and Non-Disclosure Attorney Can Help
The processes to have your records expunged, or to pursue a non-disclosure, can be quite complicated. An expunction non-disclosure lawyer in Irving, TX can help you navigate this process and increase your chances of success.
At the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, we will first identify the appropriate jurisdiction, which could be Irving’s municipal court, the county court, or the state district court. Once identified, we will petition the court and any other relevant entities to get the process started.
If neither the court nor any related agencies contest the petition, your hearing will come next. An Irving, TX expunction attorney will be present at the hearing to advocate for you, present relevant evidence, and establish the validity of your request. In cases of non-disclosure, the process is quite similar. We will file the petition and represent you at the subsequent hearing.
Although you may qualify for expunction or non-disclosure if you meet the criteria, there is no guarantee. The judge is not obligated to grant your request. As such, it is the job of your legal team to position you for the most favorable outcome, presenting your case in such a way as to prove that an expunction or non-disclosure should be granted.
Contact an Expunction and Non-Disclosure Lawyer Today
Attorney Randall Isenberg has been working in the criminal justice system for more than 30 years as a defense attorney, a felony prosecutor, and a judge. As a result, he can see the big picture when he defends clients against all kinds of charges. He knows how the other side thinks. An expunction non-disclosure lawyer in Irving, TX will thoroughly review the details of your case to determine the most appropriate strategy, and we will be by your side throughout the entire process. Contact us today at 214-696-9253 for a free and confidential consultation about your case.