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How Can I Obtain Expungement or Non-Disclosure for A Case on My Criminal Record?

Many people do not know that Texas law recently has expanded the number of eligible cases that can be cleared from your criminal record. This new law, in conjunction with previous laws, allows for many criminal offenses to be sealed or completely erased from a person’s record. In addition, expungements or non-disclosures can apply for recent or older cases, depending on how the case resolved.

A criminal defense attorney can petition the court to have convictions sealed, removing blemishes from otherwise clean criminal histories. When the court seals a conviction, the offense no longer shows up on a criminal background check and is not accessible to the public. If a charge was reduced or dismissed, the law may offer even better options for clearing your record.

What Is the Difference Between Expungement and Non Disclosure?

Expungement clears your criminal record, and non-disclosure seals the record from public view. A criminal case that’s been expunged can no longer be accessed, even by law enforcement.



Will a Dismissed Case Still Show up On My Criminal Record?

Yes. Many people believe once your case is dismissed or dropped, it disappears. Not true. You must follow through and file the right documents for expungement or non-disclosure. Knowing which to apply for is important because if you ask for the wrong thing, the court will require you to file again, and your money spent on the original filing will be lost. An attorney can file all that paperwork for you.

What Kinds of Cases Are Eligible for Expungement or Non Disclosure?

Eligibility has less to do with the original charge and more to do with how the case was resolved. Cases that have the most potential for eligibility include:

  • Cases for which you successfully completed a Diversion Program

  • Cases that were dismissed

  • Cases for which you successfully completed deferred probation

  • Misdemeanor cases, even final convictions, where there’s no other criminal history (can include DWI convictions)

Additionally, expungement and non-disclosure may be available in:

  • Some cases where you received straight probation

  • Some cases where you were convicted and served time

  • Some felony cases

Can I Expunge or Non-Disclose a Felony?

Yes. In some cases, you can receive a felony expungement or non-disclosure. As stated above, your eligibility has more to do with how the case was resolved than the details of the original charge. How long will it take to obtain an expungement or non-disclosure?

It varies, depending upon the county, the district attorney’s office, and court processing. You should start the process sooner rather than later. Here’s why:

  • Usually, the process takes about two months, but in some cases, it can take up to 12 months. Don’t wait until you’ve started the job search or university application.

  • What you can expunge or non disclose today may not be eligible tomorrow. Even a minor criminal charge, such as a class c misdemeanor, can affect your current eligibility, so the opportunity to apply can be lost.

How Can I Find out If My Case Qualifies for Expungement or Non Disclosure?

Call us for a brief consultation. Within a five-minute phone call, we usually can tell you whether some or all of your criminal history can be cleared from your record. The first step is just making the phone call.

Why MC Criminal Law?

When the bill was sent to the texas house, seeking to expand opportunities for expungement and non-disclosure in 2016, we were the highest-ranking prosecutors in the Dallas DA’s office. We supported the bill and followed its progress through the legislative session. After years of experience as prosecutors and defense attorneys, we understand the process from every angle.

With more than 26 years of criminal experience as prosecutors and defense attorneys, MC Criminal Law can help.

Call today to find out if your criminal history could be partially or fully cleared. Don’t let a past mistake hinder your future. Texas law now wants to help you put it behind you. So do we.


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