Fort Worth Expungement Lawyer
How to Get an Arrest Removed From Your Record
Obtaining a “not guilty” verdict from a trial is a major relief, and while the worst is over, you still have one more step to take before you can put this incident behind you. Even if your case is dismissed or you are found "not guilty", the record of your arrest is not removed from your criminal record. While the record does include the outcome of your trial, and whether or not the case was dismissed, many potential employers, home renters, or other people who can submit a background check on you may only focus on the fact that you were arrested, without reading further into it.
I understand how important it is to have your criminal record sealed or expunged to protect your future and allow you to live a normal life. Thankfully, as a Fort Worth expungement attorney, I may be able to help you remove this incident from your record so that it never again gets in the way. Call me to see if your case qualifies for expunction.
Want to learn more about expungement in North Texas? Call (817) 857-6307 today.
Order of Nondisclosure v. Expungement
There are two ways to remove an arrest from your record: nondisclosure or expungement.
In an order of nondisclosure, the details of your arrest are not “erased” per se, rather, the arrest is concealed and can only be viewed by law enforcement and state agencies. This record can still be used against you as a prior offense when determining penalties if you are convicted of a different crime. If you are unable to have your arrest expunged for whatever reason, an order of non-disclosure may prove to be a favorable alternative. Additionally, thanks to a relatively new law in Texas, HB 3016—known as the “second chance law”—first offenders that meet certain criteria and complete the terms of their sentencing have the opportunity to have their criminal record sealed from public view through an order of nondisclosure.
Expungement, on the other hand, is a permanent removal of the arrest, ensuring that no one, not even most law enforcement officials, can find the arrest on your record. However, you can only have your record expunged under certain circumstances. For example:
- You are acquitted or found not guilty
- You are pardoned
- You are convicted by the trial court and then acquitted on appeal
- Your case is dismissed
There are very rare circumstances where an expunged record can be viewed. For example, if the arrest record becomes relevant evidence for another crime, the details of the arrest may be disclosed to select members of law enforcement.
Benefits of an Expungement
There are many benefits to having your criminal record expunged by filing a petition for expunction. For instance, you may (1) tell employers that you have not been arrested or convicted of a crime, (2) become eligible to obtain student loans, (3) become eligible for housing assistance, (4) be able to successfully obtain a professional license or certificate, (5) tell friends you have not been arrested or convicted, and (6) no longer have to worry about the expunged arrest during a routine background check.
How to Request an Expungement
An expungement does not occur automatically. If you are eligible, you must file a Petition for Expunction with a Texas district court. The petition must contain basic identifying information, as well as the grounds for which you are entitled to expungement. The district attorney and other law enforcement agencies may contest your petition. If it is accepted, a judge holds a hearing and makes a final decision.
Call Today to Find Out IF You Can Have Your Arrest Expunged
There is no reason an arrest for a crime you did not commit should haunt you for the rest of your life. Let me use my experience and knowledge as a Fort Worth expungement attorney to help you walk through each step of the process by filling out paperwork, handling any objections from the district attorney, and protecting your rights in court.
Call (817) 857-6307 to learn more about expungement and concealment in Texas.