Illinois has its own set of laws regarding expunging a criminal’s record. For those who have been accused of a crime, the accusation will stay on your record regardless of whether or not you were found guilty. This can create a great desire to have the charges that are on your record expunged.
Expunging vs. sealing
Just because your criminal defense lawyer was able to get the charges dropped doesn’t mean they may stop there. They may opt for requesting to have your record expunged or sealed. When a record is expunged, it erases that event from your criminal record. It will be as if the charges were never filed. When you request for sealing your record, it hides the charge from the public. However, law enforcement and potential employers can still have access to it.
What offenses can be expunged?
Each state will have a list of offenses that can be expunged and those that can’t be. In Illinois, you can have various items expunged, which include:
- Misdemeanors and felonies with vacated or reversed convictions
- Misdemeanor and felony arrests
- Sentences for court supervision
- Sentences for qualified probation
Each one of these offenses has specific eligibility requirements that you must meet in order to have them expunged from your record. In some cases, a pardon from the governor can override all eligibility requirements and allow for the expunging of specified charges.
If you’ve faced charges that you don’t want sticking on your criminal record forever, you may be able to get them expunged or sealed. It’s vital that you check the state laws regarding record expungement and sealing. You can also contact an experienced lawyer to assist you with determining whether or not your criminal record is eligible for expungement.