Second-Chance Law Gives Texans Opportunities for Fresh Starts

Starting in September, a new law took effect that allows one-time, low-level convictions, such as DWIs, to be sealed from public view. The law, known as HB 3016, is retroactive and applies to offenses that may have occurred many years ago.

This new law, in conjunction with previous laws, allows for many criminal offenses to be sealed or completely erased from a person’s record.

HB 3016 was sent to the House when Madson Castello partners Messina Madson was First Assistant and Acting District Attorney and Kendall Castello was Chief Administrative Attorney for the Dallas District Attorney’s Office. As highest-ranking prosecutors in the DA’s office, we supported the bill and followed its progress through the legislative session.

This new law is a significant move in the right direction, but it is only valuable if Texans know and understand the law.

Now our firm has an opportunity to contribute by informing Texans and offering ourselves as a resource. An 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 sealing or expunging the records.

With more than 26 years of criminal experience as prosecutors and defense attorneys, Madson Castello can help.

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