What is Expungement? | Why You Should Consider Expunging Your Record

“Expungement” is the process of removing a criminal charge from your record, effectively wiping your slate clean and releasing you from all “penalties and disabilities.” This allows you to deny that you’ve been convicted of a charge on most private sector job applications. It also allows you to remove a guilty plea and change it to a not guilty plea, so when someone runs a background check or a livescan on you, it will show that the charge or charges have been dismissed. 

The biggest benefits that come along with expunging your criminal record are the countless opportunities that will open up for you. When a potential landlord, creditor, employer or school runs a criminal background check, your record will still show your arrest. However, it will also show the dismissal of your conviction in “the interest of justice,” giving you a much better chance of a positive outcome in achieving your goals. 

Who Is Eligible For An Expungement? | Penal Code Section 1203.4

While every case is different and there are exceptions in some cases , most individuals who were sentenced to imprisonment in county jail, probation, a fine or a combination of the aforementioned penalties are eligible to seek an expungement of their record for both misdemeanor and felony convictions. In the state of California under PC 1203.4, you must meet the following criteria:

Completed Probation

If you successfully completed probation and met all of the following conditions, you may be eligible for expungement 

  • No further criminal violations
  • Obeyed all orders set forth by the Court and Jail
  • Attended scheduled appointments with your probation officer
  • Paid restitution and fines
  • Completed community service
  • Submitted to police officer searches and seizures of your person or property with or without a warrant; and
  • Attended required Drug Treatment Programs or Alcohol Programs.
  • Are not currently on probation or parole.

Situations Where You May Qualify For Expungement

If any of the following circumstances apply to your case, you should immediately call our law firm to to see whether you may qualify for an expungement of your criminal record:

  • Did not serve time in state prison for the criminal case OR
  • Served time in state prison, but would have served it in the county jail had the crime been committed after implementation of “Realignment” under Proposition 47.1 
  • Served time for a non-violent crime, and participated in a California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) conservation camp fire crew. As of January 1, 2021, AB 2147 went into effect, allowing former fire crew members to have their records expunged in hopes of removing barriers so they can seek jobs as firefighters in the community upon release. 

It is important to note that even if you violated your probation, you may still be eligible to get your records expunged. The experienced lawyers of Wallin & Klarich can help you navigate this complicated process and will represent you at your hearing to determine whether or not your expungement will be granted. For a complimentary consultation to see whether your case meets the established criteria for expungement, contact us today, toll-free at (877) 4-NO-JAIL!

Who is NOT Eligible for Expungement? | PC 1203.4

In most instances, if you served time in state prison, you are not eligible for expungement of your criminal record. There are exceptions that do apply, so see below to check your potential eligibility. Additionally, certain very serious crimes are deemed ineligible for expungement. These crimes include:

  • Sodomy with a minor – PC 286(c)
  • Lewd and lascivious acts with a minor – PC 288
  • Oral copulation with a minor – PC 288a(c)
  • Continuous sexual abuse of a child – PC 288.5
  • Forcible sexual penetration with a minor under 14 years old – PC 289(j)
  • Unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor under 16 years old committed by a person over 21 years old – PC 261.5(d)
  • Felony Possession of Child Pornography – PC 311
  • Failure to stop and submit to inspection of equipment or for an unsafe condition endangering a person – Vehicle Code section 42002.1
  • Any infractions or special misdemeanors under Vehicle Code section 42001

However, if your case falls into one of the categories listed directly above there still may other options for you. We may be able to help you request a Governor’s Pardon under Penal Code section 1203.4(g) in some cases. While a Governor’s Pardon does not erase the criminal conviction from your record, it will show that you have been rehabilitated and are ready to be a productive member of society. 

When Can I Petition To Have My Record Expunged? 

  • You can petition to have your record expunged immediately after you have successfully completed all the terms of your probation. If the court discharges your probation before the end of your term, you may petition for an expungement when your probation ends. (Penal Code section 1203.3)[ii]
  • If you are convicted of a misdemeanor or infraction but do not receive probation, you’ll need to wait a year from the date of the judgment to petition. 

You don’t have to figure out the intricacies of expungement on your own. At Wallin & Klarich, we will look at the details of your case, determine your likelihood of success,  and remain by your side throughout the entire process. 

Steps Towards Expungement | What We Can Do For You

Step 1: Hire an Attorney

The first and most important step to expunging your record is obtaining an experienced defense attorney. Our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have over 40 years representing clients in cases like this. We know the ins and outs of the expungement process and will guide you through each step. 

Step 2: Complete Forms

At Wallin & Klarich, our experienced attorneys will complete the necessary forms for you. Besides the necessary expungement paperwork, you may need to fill out additional forms to terminate probation or reduce a felony to a misdemeanor. When you hire one of our attorneys, we will ensure the right paperwork is filled out correctly to better your chances of expungement.  

Step 3: File for Expungement

Filing your paperwork in the correct manner and on-time is vital to your success. With Wallin & Klarich, you don’t have to worry about meeting the deadlines. We will take care of everything for you. 

Step 4: Preparing for Court

Your attorney will help you gather evidence to show the judge that you have completed probation and that there have been no new violations. If you have picked up new charges or violated probation, we will gather evidence to show the court that you have been rehabilitated which can include:

  • School Transcripts
  • Job training
  • Employment  
  • Volunteer Work 
  • Letters from employer, clergy, school officials, probation officer, etc, 
  • Counselling 
  • Treatment program 

Step 5: What If Your Expungement Is Denied? 

In the case that your expungement is denied, we will work with you to figure out the soonest possible time that we can refuel for you in order to get your record expunged.  

Hire An Experienced Expungement Lawyer | How We Can Help You

When dealing with something as vital  as clearing up your criminal record, it is crucial to hire an experienced expungement lawyer. At the criminal defense law firm of Wallin & Klarich, we believe that there are four (4) key aspects that you or a loved one should look for when hiring an attorney. 

  1. Experience
  2. Communication
  3. Track record
  4. Ethos – Credibility

Wallin & Klarich | 40+ Years of Experience Defending Expungement Cases

Here at Wallin & Klarich, our team of skilled attorneys have over 40+ years of experience representing clients seeking to expunge their records. If you want to maximize your chance of success in cleaning up your criminal record you will want to strongly consider hiring a law firm like Wallin and Klarich who has been successful in hundreds of other similar cases.

24/7 Communication With Your Attorney | The Wallin & Klarich Way

Cases are won in the courtroom, but made in the office. At Wallin & Klarich, we believe that communication and transparency are a vital key to a successful case. With all the paperwork and legal jargon, we have found that it is common for clients to get lost in the legal process and only have a vague idea of what is going on in their case. We believe this is outright wrong. By keeping an open line of communication with our clients and walking side-by-side through each step of the case, we have found that our clients are not only happier, but receive a better outcome when communication is kept at the forefront of our efforts. 

Give us a call at 877-4-NO-JAIL and let’s talk about how we can get the best outcome for your case. 

Track Record of Success | Wallin & Klarich History of Winning Cases

Words mean nothing if the outcome of our cases are subpar. We are confident enough in our abilities to deliver the best possible outcome of your case that we invite you to read about some of our previous big wins in the courtroom! 

Reputation & Ethos | Wallin & Klarich A Reputation You Want on Your Side

With an abundance of attorneys practicing in every area throughout California, it is often difficult to parse the noteworthy ones from the average. Luckily, you don’t have to. Throughout our years of representing Expungement and other high-stakes cases, the attorneys at Wallin Klarich have made appearances all throughout television, newspapers, and websites like The O’Reilly Factor, Rolling Stones, LA Daily Journal, and many more.

Please call us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245. We are here to help you.


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