Records that are expunged in Vermont are removed from public record. They are not destroyed, but any public person that does a criminal records search will not come across a record that has been expunged. The purpose of an expungement in Vermont is to prevent a criminal record search from showing someone that a person has committed a crime after if it has been expunged. Public records that have been expunged are considered sealed and access to the public is blocked. The file is not destroyed because it may be revisited in a later criminal trial or criminal investigation.
Vermont Expungement Eligibility
People who have committed a sex crime are not eligible for a public record expungement. Sex offender names will always be available in a Vermont criminal records search. Those who have completed their required sentence and any additional requirements, such as probation and have been discharged by the court are eligible for expungement.
A juvenile who has successfully completed their sentence is almost ready for their public record to be expunged. The judge hearing the case must believe the juvenile has been rehabilitated and has earned the privilege of a public record expungement and having their name removed from all criminal records searches regarding that crime committed while a juvenile.
What Records may be Expunged?
Juveniles that were not convicted of a crime may have records containing their fingerprints removed from public record. All records, files and index references shall be removed during the expungement. The removal of index references will prevent a juvenile's name from appearing during a criminal record search.
How are Records Expunged?
Those who have had all charges against them dropped and have fully paid any necessary restitution may have their record expunged. This is enforced by Vermont law, and unlike many other states, no petition is required to have a public record expunged.