Having a criminal record can affect your ability to apply and pursue a job with confidence. You may also find trouble qualifying for a loan or clearing background checks for any previous convictions. For this reason many people with criminal records look into having their criminal records expunged because of the limitations it can place becoming a disadvantage in daily life.
The State of Oregon has expungement laws that allow the court to seal convictions for certain crimes. Once this record is sealed it allows a person to portray a positive image as if the crime had never been committed. There are waiting periods before you can make a request for your record to be expunged.
In most cases, a person may apply for expungement any time after three years since the date of conviction, provided that a person has fully complied with the rules of their sentencing. In certain cases, if someone is arrested with no charges filed, the court will set side those criminal records to be expunged after one year. If a person is arrested and all charges are acquitted or the case is dismissed, they can apply for their records to be expunged immediately.
When applying for criminal record expungement, you have to ensure that there are no arrests for any other charges within three years of the original arrest. There must be no conviction within the last 10 years as well. Expungements will also not be granted to repeat offenders or persons who habitually commit crimes of a similar nature.
Juveniles in the State of Oregon are required to wait at least five years after their last contact with the juvenile court to request expungement. There must be no convictions or felonies, pending violations, or any Class A misdemeanors when issuing the expungement.
In most counties, expungment is not automatic. A motion must be filed. A fee is required to have your records expunged. The fee can vary, depending on the cost of legal aid received with each individual’s case. Expungement will usually require the aid of Oregon lawyers to draft the motion for expungement. It is actually recommended that you seek the advice of a lawyer when requesting a record to be expunged. The expungement motion will be filed with the court where an offender was sentenced. It is important that the court sees that the offender has made a valid effort and is now living an honest life.
Getting your records expunged is a great way to close doors on past mistakes and provides past offenders with a streak of new confidence. This is especially the case when the charges brought against a person are minor or an event was simply misunderstood. No person should feel the void of walking around with the burdens of past errors, especially if the situation was deemed a learning experience.
Having a clean record allows a person to move forward with their life, without the baggage of a prior conviction, without the embarrassment of having to disclose a criminal record or worry about that information being searched. Expungement provides a peace of mind and, in essence, a new beginning.