Having a criminal history can make almost every aspect of your life more difficult, impacting everything from child custody decisions to employment prospects. Fortunately, expungement allows some people to effectively seal their records, giving them a chance to start over. If you’re not eligible for expungement, however, there are still a few options you should explore.
What You Should Do if You Don’t Qualify for Expungement
1. Speak With an Attorney
Even if you don’t think you qualify under the rules of your state, you should still speak to a skilled defense attorney. Many states have recently passed sweeping changes to their expungement and reporting systems, making it possible for more people to seal their records. In Ohio, for example, most misdemeanors can be expunged after a one-year waiting period, and records of felony convictions can be sealed after three. In some cases, a skilled attorney might be able to craft a compelling legal argument, helping you win expungement, even if you’ve been told you don’t qualify.
2. File a New Motion
In some instances, an old conviction on your record might make it impossible to expunge more recent cases. Under certain circumstances, your attorney can reopen a case and file a Motion to Vacate Judgment, which might make you eligible for expungement.
3. Apply for a Pardon
While it won’t seal the criminal record, a pardon from the governor does mean you’ll be officially forgiven for your offenses. However, only a few pardons are issued every year, and you’ll still have to go through the regular expungement process to have your records sealed.
For over a decade, James F. Bogen, Attorney at Law, has been providing defendants throughout Cincinnati, OH, with aggressive representation and a careful protection of their rights. Whether you’ve been charged with a crime or want to have your records expunged, you can rely on this professional to help you achieve the best possible outcome for your case. Follow him on Twitter for more legal tips and insight, and visit his website or call (513) 503-7251 to discuss your expungement options today.