Sealing and Expungement

Many states allow you to conceal or remove certain criminal history information from your record. This is often called sealing or expungement, although your state may call it something different.

Not all states allow you to seal or expunge criminal history information, and the states that do allow you to seal or expunge have very different rules of how long you have to wait, where you have to apply, how much you have to pay, and what actually happens to your record.

Usually, you have to file a petition in court to get your criminal history information sealed or expunged.

Once you seal or expunge criminal history information, some employers may not be able to access that information. However, every state has different rules and states often make exceptions and permit some employers to see sealed or expunged information.

These laws are very complex. If you think you might be eligible to have some or all of your criminal record sealed or expunged, it is usually helpful to talk to a lawyer.