Can Violent Crimes Be Sealed in Illinois?

In the state of Illinois, there are some crimes that must remain on your criminal record forever. But what about violent crimes? Can they be sealed? This guide explains.

Can Violent Crimes Be Sealed in Illinois?

Many violent crimes must remain on your criminal record forever, which means they will turn up in background checks. However, some types of forcible felonies – a term that includes some violent crimes – can be sealed. The best way to find out whether your record qualifies for sealing is to talk to an attorney who focuses on criminal record clearing.

Generally, the only other alternative to sealing or expungement is a pardon from the governor of the state. Although some people have been successful at getting pardons from the governor in the past, you need to know that if you intend to take that route, there’s a high likelihood your request will be denied. Pardons are very difficult to get, and it can take years of petitioning just to get a denial.

Related: Can a felon with a sealed record own a gun?

List of Violent Crimes You Can’t Seal in Illinois

There are a number of crimes that the government considers violent, and they can’t be sealed. Here’s a quick list of crimes, both violent and nonviolent, that you can’t seal in Illinois:

  • Domestic battery
  • Sex offenses (other than prostitution)
  • Any offense that requires you to register as a sex offender (even if it’s not directly sex-related)
  • Violating a civil no-contact order, stalking no-contact order, or order of protection
  • Public indecency
  • Dog fighting
  • Animal cruelty

Can You Seal Only Some of Your Record in Illinois?

Even if you have violent crimes that can’t be sealed on your criminal record, you may be able to seal other offenses. The best way to find out whether you can clean up your criminal record is to talk to an expungement and sealing attorney in Chicago who can give you the guidance you need based on your specific situation.

Related: Who can see expunged records?

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Expungement or Sealing?

If you’re tired of your criminal past coming back to bite you, we may be able to help. Call us right now at 847-920-4540 or fill out the form below so we can talk about your case.

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