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What Crimes Qualify for Expungement in California?

Posted on in Expungement

San Jose expungement lawyersSometimes, people make poor choices or use bad judgment, which can result in criminal charges and potential convictions. In other cases, individuals may have simply been in the wrong place at the wrong time and suffered because of another party’s wrongdoing. A guilty verdict or plea places a negative mark on a person’s record, which can affect his or her future. For example, he or she can have trouble seeking employment or applying for a mortgage loan. 

However, past mistakes should not affect the rest of their life. In California, like in other states, a person may be able to “clear” their record through expungement. This legal procedure does not erase a criminal record, but it essentially sets it aside. That means if a person is interviewing for a job and the prospective employer performs a background check, his or her prior criminal conviction will not show up. Therefore, expunging a record can significantly enhance a person’s future opportunities. 

California Offenses That Can Be Expunged

It is important to note that not all criminal convictions in California can be expunged. Certain misdemeanors and some felonies are eligible for expungement. According to the California Penal Code, offenders may qualify for expungement if they: 

  • Completed probation (misdemeanor or felony)
  • Are not currently charged with a crime, on probation, or serving a jail sentence 

An individual is ineligible for expungement in California if he or she was convicted of certain sex crimes against children, including sodomy, lewd acts, oral copulation, and statutory rape.

A few examples of misdemeanor offenses that could potentially be expunged include: 

  • Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol
  • Driving on a suspended license
  • Disorderly conduct
  • Public drunkenness
  • Petty theft
  • Shoplifting
  • Solicitation for prostitution 
  • Violation of probation 

Depending on the circumstances, some felony offenses can be expunged the charge resulted in probation and not a prison sentence. Expungeable felonies may include:  

Contact a Santa Clara County Criminal Defense Attorney

Expunging a record can be a way for individuals to obtain a fresh start. If you or someone you know is facing any type of criminal charge, it is important to seek professional legal counsel to avoid a conviction. A competent San Jose, CA expungement lawyer will thoroughly review the details of your case to make sure your rights were not violated at any time. Attorney Erik Steven Johnson has more than 10 years of experience helping clients avoid convictions by building strong defenses that result in favorable outcomes. Call our office today at 408-246-3004 to schedule your free and confidential consultation. 



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