Not every type of charge or conviction can be expunged. Likewise, there are certain waiting periods you must fulfill before seeking an expungement for certain types of dispositions. For example, a probation before judgment or a stet can only be expunged after three years have passed since the disposition. We can advise you as to what requirements there are and your chances of being successful if you do decide to seek an expungement.
What is EXPUNGEMENT?
Some types of criminal records can be expunged in Maryland. An expungement is the elimination of official public records of criminal investigations, charges, prosecutions, and court dispositions. In order to get your criminal record expunged, you must file a petition for expungement with the court.
A criminal record harms your reputation and can make it difficult to get a job and housing. Through the use of the Internet and private companies, it is easy to find out the criminal record of another person. Employers use this information when making decisions about job offers; insurance companies analyze this information when determining rates; and this information can even affect the granting of a housing application.
Am I Eligible for Expungement?
You may be eligible for an expungement of the following:
- Arrests where you were never formally charged
- Probation before judgment — except DUI or DWI
- Stet docket (three years passed)
- Trial that results in a not guilty verdict or hung jury
- Charges that were not pressed, were dismissed, or were not prosecuted
- Convictions for a limited number of minor crimes
If you were previously convicted of possession of marijuana (under 10 grams), you are probably eligible to have this conviction expunged under a law in Maryland that went into effect on October 1, 2015. Possession of under 10 grams of marijuana is no longer a crime in Maryland. If you were convicted of possession of marijuana (under 10 grams) before it was decriminalized, you can now get an expungement.
Although an expungement usually does not result in your record completely being destroyed or erased, it can mean that the record is sealed and moved out of the publicly searchable databases. This may help you avoid having these records used by parties such as potential employers.
To learn more about our expungement practice, please contact us today to schedule a free consultation with our experienced criminal defense lawyers.
MacDonald Law Office, LLC Expungment Legal Counsel
Only certain types of criminal records can be expunged under Maryland law. It is important to have a knowledgeable Salisbury criminal defense attorney review your record and advise you about whether or not your record can be expunged before you spend the money on an expungement petition. Our lawyers are former prosecutors who can properly evaluate the disposition of your case and what parts of your record may be able to be expunged.
With offices in Salisbury and Ocean City, the MacDonald Law Office, LLC, may be able to help you petition the court for an expungement of your criminal record. We are here to help you protect your future and make sure you are not penalized for your past.
Call us at (410) 348-7809 to learn more about expungements and our criminal defense practice during a free confidential consultation.
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