Diminishing the Impact of Past Mistakes
We all make mistakes. In some instances, though, those errors in judgment can haunt us for years. A prior criminal record can make it difficult to get the job you want, to find a decent place to live, to get a loan or even to qualify for student aid. Fortunately, in the state of New Jersey, you can expunge certain criminal records, giving an opportunity for a fresh start. When your record is expunged, it will as if the records never existed in the first place. In most contexts, you can even deny that you were arrested or convicted.
The rules in New Jersey are somewhat different, depending on whether or not you were convicted of a crime.
- No conviction–If you were arrested, but not convicted, you can ask to have all records sealed if the proceedings were dismissed or if you were acquitted. If you participated in a supervisory treatment program, which led to the dismissal, you must wait six months after the dismissal to seek expungement. Records may not be expunged, though, if the dismissal was the result of a ruling of insanity or lack of capacity, or the result of a plea bargain involving another criminal charge.
- Conviction—You can still pursue expungement, even if you were convicted, but you must typically wait six years from the date of the conviction for an indictable offense and five years for a disorderly persons offense. Municipal ordinance violations may be expunged after two years and minor drug offenses after just a year.
Contact Our Office
At the Cintron Firm, LLC, we offer more than 14 years of experience to people in New Jersey facing a broad array of legal challenges. Send us an e-mail or call us at 201-791-1333 or 917-494-5695 to set up an appointment.