Having a criminal record can affect your life in more ways than you can imagine. It can destroy your reputation in the community and make it harder for you to rent an apartment or get a job. It can also have an adverse impact on your credit score and insurance rates.
Fortunately, it is possible to erase certain types of criminal records through a process called expunction. As a top-rated Texas expunction lawyer, I have helped numerous clients successfully clear their records over the years.
What is expunction and how does it work? Why is it needed? Does everyone with a criminal record qualify for an expunction? Let me answer these questions for you one by one.
What Is Expunction?
Expunction, also referred to as expungement, is a legal process through which a person with a criminal record can have their record expunged or erased. By obtaining an expunction order from court, you can have all the references to your arrest or prosecution removed from state records.
Why Is Expunction Needed?
The problem with a criminal record is that it can be accessed by anyone – prospective employers, landlords, creditors, insurance companies, educational institutions, car rental companies, and many more. So, it can affect every aspect of your life – your career, your creditworthiness, your insurability, and your social status.
This is why an expunction becomes necessary, as it allows you to wipe the slate clean and turn your life around. Once you expunge your record, you are no longer obligated to share the details of your arrest or conviction with anyone. Simply put, you can shed the baggage of your past and make a fresh start in life.
How Does Expunction Work?
As your Texas expunction lawyer, I can file a Petition for Expunction on your behalf. Depending on the severity of your criminal record, I can recommend When and Where to file the petition, either in a municipal court, county court, or a district court.
Upon filing the petition, I will request the court on your behalf for a hearing, where a judge will decide if an expungement can be granted or not. Keep in mind though that almost 100% of the time a hearing is never needed and you do not ever have to appear in court…ever. If it is agreed to then it will be granted and I will prepare an Order of Expunction and present it to the judge for their signature. The signed order will be sent to various state agencies and organizations, requesting them to remove all the references related to your arrest or prosecution. According to the law, it becomes illegal for any agency to retain any records about the incident you expunged. You can deny you were ever even arrested for this offense, legally!
The expunction petition as well as the expunction order needs to be prepared carefully and immaculately, as any error on your part can delay the process to no end. This is precisely why I tell my clients not to attempt to file an expunction petition by themselves. The expertise of a Texas expunction attorney is absolutely necessary in such cases.
Who Can Qualify for an Expunction in Texas?
Section 55.01 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure lists a number of conditions under which you can qualify for an expunction.
You were arrested for a crime but not formally charged
You were formally charged but the charges were dismissed by a court
You were acquitted of your charges
You were convicted of a crime in a lower court but acquitted by a court of appeals
You were convicted of a crime but formally pardoned by the Governor or the President
This is by no means an exhaustive list. So, if you do not meet any of the conditions listed above, do not worry. Contact me and I will review your case and tell you whether you qualify for an expungement or not.
Need an Expert Expunction Attorney in Texas? Choose Tyler Flood
In my career as a Texas expunction attorney, I have helped countless clients expunge their criminal records. I have an in-depth understanding of the laws related to expunction in Texas and I know what it takes to obtain an expunction order from a municipal, county, or district court.
I treat all my clients like family, and I am committed to providing the best possible legal counsel to everyone irrespective of their background. If you are looking for an experienced Texas expunction lawyer to expunge your criminal record, you should connect with our team, here at Flood-Lewis & Associates.
For a free case review, call my legal team 24/7, 365, at 713.224.5529 or use this online contact form.