One mistake can cause inconveniences or minor setbacks for people. But when the mistake is actually a poor choice or decision that constitutes a criminal act, people’s entire futures can be impacted significantly.
Texans with criminal records often worry about how their criminal histories will affect them and their families. They understand that their criminal records can have an effect on every aspect of their lives, from decreasing employment opportunities to disallowing child custody to affecting the ability to secure loans and everything in between. But what can be done? Luckily, in some circumstances, there is something that can be done to make the consequences of that bad decision go away. Texas law allows for the expungement of some arrests from criminal records.
WHAT IS EXPUNGEMENT?
Expungement refers to the clearing of a criminal record. In Texas, some arrests can be expunged from criminal records through a legal process that results in something called an expunction. An expunction in Texas is a court order that requires law enforcement to destroy records related to a specific arrest, effectively permanently erasing all documents and details regarding that offense from criminal record databases. Once a signed expunction order is issued to someone, he or she can legally deny having ever been arrested, charged, or prosecuted for the offense. That said, some offenses do not qualify for expunction.
LIMITS OF AN EXPUNCTION
An expunction can permanently remove some, not all, entries from an adult criminal history record in Texas. An expunction allows for certain records to be destroyed as directed by court order. All agencies that handle criminal records are required by the Order of Expunction to treat all expunged arrests, charges, and prosecutions as if they had never occurred and to remove them from all public records.
CLEARING CRIMINAL RECORDS
Both felony and misdemeanor arrests can be expunged from a person’s record if eligible. You must submit a petition for each arrest that you want to be cleared; each entry is individually considered by the court. If you want to learn more about how to expunge your record in Texas, your best bet is to contact a reputable criminal defense attorney to explain the details of the process. Understanding the process of how to expunge a misdemeanor in Texas, or a felony, is your first step toward cleaning up your record and moving forward in a positive direction.
Record expungement in Texas is a complicated process. Petitioning the court for an expunction requires determination of eligibility and completion of the application paperwork. Your qualified attorney can help you as you seek criminal record expungement. If you or a loved one is interested in having your criminal record cleared in the Austin, Texas area, you should seek legal assistance from experienced and knowledgeable attorney Brian Erskine of Erskine Law. A board-certified criminal defense lawyer, Brian Erskine understands the law and knows how to deal with record expungement in Texas. The skilled legal counsel at Erskine Law has years of success defending clients against a variety of charges, as well as helping them clear their records. Contact Erskine Law at any time to discuss how he can support you.