Mistakes happen and, when they do, it’s not unusual for someone to be sentenced to time behind bars when the punishment fits the crime. However, various types of convictions will remain on your record and come back to haunt you forever, at the very times you would rather put those mistakes behind you and move on. For example, with a criminal record, it may be difficult to get a job, a loan, admitted to school, etc.
However, there is a process that may allow someone with a minor criminal record to move beyond their conviction. Expungement is a legal procedure that allows past mistakes to be erased from one’s record after penalties have been served.
There are many schools of thought on the pros and cons expungement. Those with criminal convictions are likely to support the process; after all, they’ve served their time and now want the chance to move on with their lives. On the other hand, employers often want to know if a prospective employee has a record, as might a landlord. Additionally, there are some careers where having a record may be extremely unacceptable, such as a police officer.
For all of these reasons, the laws surrounding expungement are complex. An experienced criminal lawyer who knows the ins and outs of the complicated application process is critical to the success of getting your expungement approved. Also, keep in mind, only some crimes are expungeable and there are various waiting periods associated with having a record expunged; it depends on the criminal charge.
These crimes are not expungeable in New Jersey:
- Homicide or murder
- Luring or enticing
- Aggravated sexual assault (rape)
- Criminal sexual contact with a minor
- Endangering the welfare of a minor (with regard to sexual contact or porn charges)
- Criminal restraint
- Endangering the Welfare of a Child (if based on sexual contact or child pornography)
- False imprisonment
- Perjury or False Swearing
- Some drug charges including first and second degree distribution or possession with intent to distribute
- Additionally, in NJ, driving while intoxicated (DUI/DWI) is not a criminal offense; it is a motor vehicle violation. Therefore, DWI is not expungeable in New Jersey.
Getting a criminal record expunged is not as easy as filling out a form and awaiting a rubber stamp. Many law enforcement entities must sign off on sealing your record.
Don’t go it alone. Contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer who will work hard to get your record expunged. Call the Law Offices of John W. Tumelty today for more information about expungements or any current criminal or motor vehicle charges you are facing.