Can I expunge a 35 year old offense from my record?

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2013

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Can I expunge a 35 year old offense from my record?

This is preventing me from getting employment today.

Asked on March 19, 2013 under Criminal Law, Texas


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If the case was never filed (i.e. an indictment was never returned or a complaint was never filed), then you can get the arrest expunged.  If the offense resulted in a deferred adjudication, then you cannot get it expunged, but you can request an order of non-disclosure.  This has a similar effect to an expunction in that the public will no longer have access to your record-- just law enforcement.  If your charge resulted in a final conviction (like a prison sentence or a strait probation), then you cannot get it expunged. 

To really know if your offense qualifies, arrange for a consultation with a criminal defense attorney who understands current expunction laws.  The Texas legislature revamped the expunction laws in 2011 making it easier for defendants to obtain expunctions.  Charges that could never be expunged before are now eligible.  Considering the impact on your employment, it's worth the discussion.  If your charge does not qualify at this time, consider revisiting the issue again in a couple of years-- as the legislatures have been tweaking this statute.  You may eventually become eligible for an expunction. 

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