Your attorney determines whether you’re eligible for expungement – and if you’re not, he determines whether you qualify for criminal record sealing.
If you are eligible for expungement, your lawyer completes a petition to ask the court to clear your record.
You provide your expungement attorney with supporting documentation, such as a negative drug test or proof that you completed your sentence.
Your attorney files the petition with the court. There is a filing fee associated with an expungement petition.
The state’s attorney reviews your petition. The state’s attorney can object or agree – but either way, your case goes on to other parties who have a chance to object or agree. Eventually, your petition (with the state’s attorney’s and others’ recommendations) ends up in front of a judge.
If the state’s attorney objects, you may be entitled to a hearing. Your Rolling Meadows expungement attorney can represent you at this hearing.
The judge will decide whether to expunge your record.
If the judge decides in your favor, he or she will issue an order that tells the County Clerk, the agency that arrested you, the Illinois State Police and the FBI to clear your criminal records.
How Do You Qualify for Expungement in Rolling Meadows?
You may be eligible to expunge:
Arrests for misdemeanors and felonies that never resulted in a conviction
Sentences for supervision if the waiting period has passed
Sentences for qualified probation if the waiting period has passed
Convictions that were reversed, vacated, pardoned or approved by the Prisoner Review Board
Some nonviolent Class 3 and Class 4 felonies if you are an honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces
If your record qualifies for expungement, you can petition the court. Check out the table below to determine how long you must wait before your expungement attorney in Rolling Meadows can petition the court for your expungement.
Sentenced to Supervision
Sentenced to Special Probation
If your charges were dismissed, your Rolling Meadows expungement lawyer can ask the court to clear your record immediately.
If you were acquitted (found not guilty) of a crime, your attorney can petition the court to clear your record immediately.
If you were sentenced to supervision, you must usually wait until 2 years have passed since you successfully completed your supervision.
If you were sentenced to special probation, you must usually wait until 5 years have passed since you successfully completed your probation.
Can Employers, Landlords and Others See Expunged Records?
If the judge grants your petition for expungement, your criminal record no longer exists. Nobody can see it. In fact, nobody will ever know that you had a criminal record… it’s gone, and you’re free to move on with your life as if nothing ever happened.
What Happens if You Don’t Qualify for Expungement?
If you don’t qualify for expungement, that’s not the end of the road. You may still qualify for criminal record sealing.
Sealing is a lot like expungement – and your Rolling Meadows expungement attorney can help you clear your record this way, too. The key difference between expungement and sealing is that if your record is expunged, it goes away forever; if your record is sealed, it still exists, and some people will still be able to see it.
Who Can See Sealed Criminal Records?
Some people can still see sealed criminal records, including:
The Illinois State Police
The Department of Corrections, if you are convicted of another offense
Prosecutors carrying out their duties
Some employers, such as those that require fingerprint-based background checks (like some healthcare employers, childcare employers and the military)
Most people – including landlords, creditors and others who conduct standard (non-fingerprint-based) background checks – will not know that you have a criminal record.
What Offenses Can Your Expungement Attorney Petition the Court to Seal?
If you have arrests and charges for misdemeanors or felonies that never led to a conviction, or if you were sentenced to supervision or special probation, you should talk to an expungement attorney in Rolling Meadows about expungement. Sealing is generally available to people who don’t qualify for expungement.
Typically, you can seal most misdemeanor and felony convictions, as well as felony traffic offenses that were reduced to an eligible misdemeanor. Some convictions can never come off your record through expungement or sealing, though, including:
Driving under the influence
Domestic battery or aggravated domestic battery
Soliciting or patronizing a prostitute
Violation of an order of protection, a civil no-contact order or a stalking no-contact order
Felony public indecency
Misdemeanors listed under Article 11 of the Criminal Code
What an Expungement Attorney in Rolling Meadows Can Do for You
An expungement attorney in Rolling Meadows will make the whole expungement (or sealing) process easier on you. He’ll:
Fill out and file your petition with supporting documentation
Follow your petition’s progress
Represent you at a hearing if the state’s attorney objects to your criminal record clearing
File a Motion to Reconsider (if it’s possible in your case) if the judge does not decide in your favor
Most people get hung up on the petition – you must use certain forms and fill them out in certain ways. The legal terms can be confusing, and so can the process of coming up with supporting documentation and filing it all with the court to get into the system. Your attorney will do all the “heavy lifting” so you don’t have to worry about any of that.
When you’re ready to stop letting your criminal record define you – and stop it from preventing you from getting a job, finding a decent place to live or obtaining credit – we can help. Call us at 847-920-4540 now or fill out the form below. We’ll review your case for free and help you start moving in the right direction.
Get a Free Consultation From an Expungement Attorney in Rolling Meadows Now
Fill out this form to send your contact information to us. We’ll call or email you as soon as possible. You can also call us at 847-920-4540 if it’s easier.
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