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Expungement Attorney in Santa Cruz, California

Criminal records can have a devastating impact on so many aspects of your life, including the ability to find a job or get approved for housing opportunities. Those negative consequences of a criminal record may lead you to wonder, “Can I get rid of my arrest record or conviction?” Some Californians with a criminal history may qualify to have their arrest and conviction records expunged.

If you want to learn more about your options to expunge your criminal record and pursue a brighter future, contact an expungement attorney. At the Law Offices of Andrew C. Janecki, I serve Californians who need assistance with expunging and sealing their criminal records in Santa Cruz, California, and surrounding areas, including San Francisco, San Jose, Palo Alto, and Berkeley.

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What Is Expungement?

Expungement is a court-ordered process that allows a person with a criminal record to have their record erased in the eyes of the law. All states have their own version of laws that allow people to expunge arrest and conviction records. The expungement process and eligibility requirements may vary from one state to another. In California, when your criminal record is expunged, you are no longer required to disclose it to prospective employers and landlords when applying for jobs or housing opportunities.

Under California law, individuals are released from all penalties and disabilities associated with a conviction once they obtain an expungement. In fact, employees in California do not have an obligation to disclose their expunged convictions to employers even after a conditional offer of employment has been made.

Eligibility Requirements for an Expungement

California law allows people convicted of misdemeanors and felonies to seek expungement as long as the following requirements are met:

  1. The individual has successfully completed probation for the criminal offense; and

  2. The individual was not sentenced to serve time in prison, or they served time in state prison but would have spent time behind bars in the county jail under Proposition 47.

Consider speaking with a knowledgeable expungement attorney to discuss your specific case and determine if your case meets the eligibility requirements, whether you were convicted of a misdemeanor or felony in Santa Cruz, San Francisco, or other parts of California.

Who Is Not Eligible for an Expungement?

Not all convictions are eligible for expungement in California. In particular, California law does not permit people convicted of child pornography, serious sex offenses, and specific motor vehicle offenses to obtain an expungement. Below is the list of criminal offenses that are not eligible for expungement when the defendant is sentenced to probation:

  • Failure to stop a motor vehicle and submit to inspection (misdemeanor)

  • Sodomy with a child under the age of 14

  • Lewd acts with a child under the age of 14

  • Oral copulation with a child under the age of 14

  • Continuous sexual abuse of a child under the age of 14

  • Sexual penetration of a child under the age of 14

  • Possession or distribution of child pornography

  • Sexually manipulating a minor

  • Felony statutory rape

Convictions of any of these criminal offenses are not eligible for expungement in California. Additionally, individuals who were incarcerated in state prison or were on parole lose their eligibility for expungement.

The Expungement Process in California

If you are considering getting your criminal records expunged, the first thing you need to do is file a petition with a state court. The petition will formally initiate the expungement process in California. Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you prepare and submit a petition. An attorney has a deep understanding of the legal system and can guide you through the process of clearing your criminal record. You need an attorney to fight for your rights and increase your chances of success.

Expungement Attorney in Santa Cruz, California

Whether you were convicted of a misdemeanor or felony, you may wonder if you can obtain an expungement in California. No matter your unique situation, you deserve strong legal advocacy on your side. Seek counsel from a skilled expungement attorney in Santa Cruz, California, to assist you with your petition and represent your best interests throughout the process. As an expungement attorney at the Law Offices of Andrew C. Janecki, I’m ready to help you move forward with your life. Set up a consultation today.