Expungement in Texas: Clearing Your Criminal Record
If you have a criminal record in Texas, you may be interested in expungement, which is the process of clearing your criminal record. Expungement can be a valuable tool for individuals who want to move on from their past mistakes and build a better future. Here’s what you need to know about expungement in Texas.
Expungement is the process of erasing or sealing a criminal record. When a criminal record is expunged, it is as if the arrest and charges never happened. This can be beneficial for individuals who have been denied employment or housing because of their criminal record. Additionally, expungement can provide a sense of closure and a fresh start for individuals who have turned their lives around.
In Texas, there are certain criteria that must be met in order to be eligible for expungement. These include:
- The charges were dismissed, or you were found not guilty.
- You completed a pre-trial diversion program or a deferred adjudication program and the charges were dismissed.
- You were arrested but the charges were never filed.
If you meet these criteria, you may be eligible for expungement. However, it’s important to note that not all criminal records are eligible for expungement. For example, felony convictions are not eligible for expungement in Texas.
To begin the process of expungement in Texas, you will need to file a petition with the court in the county where you were arrested or charged. You will need to provide documentation that shows you meet the eligibility criteria for expungement. Once your petition is filed, the court will set a hearing date to consider your case.
If the court grants your expungement request, your criminal record will be sealed or erased. This means that you can legally deny the existence of the arrest or charge and the record will not show up on background checks. Additionally, you can legally state that you have never been arrested or charged with a crime.
In conclusion, expungement can be a valuable tool for individuals who want to move on from their past mistakes and build a better future in Texas. If you meet the eligibility criteria for expungement, you can begin the process by filing a petition with the court in the county where you were arrested or charged. With determination and persistence, it is possible to clear your criminal record and start fresh.