Expungement Process

The Process of Obtaining An Expungement

Requesting expungement is an in-depth, technical process. Typically, from start to finish, the entire process takes about six months. It is important to ensure that all technical requirements are met so that your request for expungement is heard and considered on its merits. If a technical requirement is not met, you may be forced to start the lengthy process over again.

Requesting Expungement of Your Criminal Or Juvenile Record

A Petition for expungement must be served on all agencies that could be affected by an expungement order. The Petition must be served and filed with the Court at least 60 days before a hearing on your request for expungement. Additionally, in most cases, a filing fee must be paid to the Court to file request for expungement.

Any affected agency can submit a written objection to the Petition for expungement, or the agency can come to Court and argue why the Judge should not grant expungement. Often, the agency that comes to the Court hearing is the prosecutor that sought the conviction in the first place. The Department of Human Services (DHS) frequently submits objections if employment in DHS-licensed facility is sought. The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) also frequently objects to the sealing of its record.

At the hearing, the Judge frequently asks questions that address the facts of the case, as well as legal issues.

After the hearing, the Judge has up to 90 days to issue a written decision that either grants expungement or denies it. If the Judge grants expungement, the Order does not go into effect for another 60 days to allow for any agency to appeal the Court's decision. If no agency appeals, the record is sealed 60 days after the Judge issued the Order for expungement.

How Arneson & Geffen Helps Clients Through The Expungement Process

Arneson & Geffen's attorneys ensure that all of the technical requirements are met so that our clients' expungement requests are not dismissed before a Judge reviews the merits of the case. In most cases, our representation includes the following:

  • We carefully review our client's criminal history and relevant law so that the request for expungement is brought properly and meets statutory or other legal requirements.
  • We write a detailed Petition to the Court that explains why our client should be granted a second chance. This Petition is the first thing the Court reads to find out who our client is, why he or she needs an expungement, and why the Court should give our client a second chance.
  • We write a legal argument that addresses both the facts of our client's situation as well as the legal issues involved in the case. We explain to the Court why it can and should grant expungement. We also write an Order for the Judge to sign, making it easier for the Court to grant our client's request for expungement.
  • We ensure that all proper agencies are served. This is necessary to obtain a complete expungement remedy, as well as to ensure that the expungement request is not dismissed on a technicality.
  • We appear with our client at the Court hearing. We explain to the Court what our client is seeking and why. We address the legal issues, answer the Judge's questions, and respond to objections brought by the prosecutor or any other agency. We handle any legal issue raised by the Judge or anyone else at the hearing.
  • Once the Judge has issued a decision on our request for expungement, we immediately deliver the decision to our client and carefully explain it. We will answer any questions our client might have about the Judge's decision.
  • We charge one, up-front flat fee for our work, so there are no unexpected bills.

Contact An Attorney

Please contact us for a no-cost consultation to learn more about how Arneson & Geffen can help you. Click here to learn about some of our clients that have been given a second chance.