Anyone could make a serious mistake in his or her life that leads to severe consequences. Certain mistakes could even result in law enforcement getting involved, and you may have had criminal charges brought against you. If a conviction took place, you may have completed your sentence as needed and felt the desire to leave the mistake in your past. Unfortunately, your past could come back to haunt you.
Because criminal convictions remain on your record, that one-time mistake could seriously impact your ability to obtain a desired job or place to live. You certainly do not want to have these important areas of your life negatively affected by a mistake in your younger years, so you may find yourself looking for information on expungement.
What is expungement?
When it comes to record expungement, qualifying individuals could potentially have marks on their criminal records sealed. Essentially, the sealing of such records means that they no longer publicly exist. However, that does not necessarily mean that a previous arrest or conviction will never impact your life again after expungement. Certain government agencies may still have the ability to view these records, and someone could even potentially use sealed records against you in the event that you face other criminal charges later.
How do you qualify for expungement?
Oklahoma state law may have specific qualifications that you must meet in order to have the option for expungement. However, some general factors that could play important roles in determining your eligibility include:
- Where the charges took place
- The type of charges involved
- The amount of time since the arrest or conviction
- Other marks on your criminal record
In some areas, if you have committed other criminal acts within a certain time period since the charge or conviction you hope to have expunged, you may not qualify.
What are the benefits of expungement?
As mentioned, expungement essentially erases a criminal mark from your record. This means that you do not have to disclose that you were arrested or convicted for that particular crime when applying for jobs or housing.
How can you get records expunged?
The expungement process is not an easy one. You must meet qualifications, and certain legal proceedings must be carried out before the consideration for expungement could even begin. Due to the complex nature of this legal process, you may wish to consult with an attorney.