If you’re like many people, you want to know if arrests show up on your criminal history in Chicago and elsewhere in Illinois.
The short answer is yes, they do – but there is something you can do about it.
Do Arrests Show Up on Criminal History Reports in Illinois?
If you’ve ever been arrested, you have a criminal record. Each arrest stays on your criminal history indefinitely – unless you petition the court to have them removed through a process called expungement
Related: How to Get a Clean Criminal Record
Will Arrests on Your Criminal History Affect Your Chances of Getting a Job?
The Job Opportunities for Qualified Applicants Act (820 ILCS 75) says
“An employer or employment agency may not inquire about or into, consider, or require disclosure of the criminal record or criminal history of an applicant until the applicant has been determined qualified for the position and notified that the applicant has been selected for an interview by the employer or employment agency or, if there is not an interview, until after a conditional offer of employment is made to the applicant by the employer or employment agency.”
That means an employer can’t ask you about your criminal record or criminal history until you’ve been asked to interview for a job. An employer can ask you about it after that, though, which could end up costing you the job.
Some jobs are exempt from this rule – so, for example, if you want to work in emergency medical services or some other types of jobs, employers can ask you to disclose your criminal history before they offer to interview you.
Related: Job Applicants With Criminal Records: Know Your Rights
How to Get Arrests Off Your Criminal History
You may qualify for criminal record expungement, which means the court can order your records to be “erased.”
You can find out if you might be eligible by answering a few questions here, or by calling our office and telling us about your situation.
In order to clear your record, you’ll need a complete copy of your entire criminal history. (If you can’t track it all down, that’s okay – we can conduct a thorough background check for you.) From there, we can create what’s called a petition to ask the court to clear your record.
Related: Where to Get Copies of Your Criminal Records in Chicago
Once we have filed your petition for expungement, the state’s attorney has a chance to object. If he or she does object, you might be entitled to a hearing – and we’ll represent you at the hearing. When your petition makes it to a judge’s desk, he or she will decide whether you’re entitled to a fresh start.
Ready to Talk About Clearing Arrests From Your Criminal History?
If you’re eligible to expunge your criminal record, we’ll help you do it. Call us at 847-920-4540 for your free consultation with an experienced expungement lawyer now.