How long does expungement take in Illinois? If you’re like many people who are thinking about clearing a criminal record, you’ve probably wondered whether it’ll be a quick process or it’ll take a while.
Here’s what you need to know.
How Long Does Expungement Take in Illinois?
Expungement can take several months, which means if you want to clear your record, you should start as soon as possible. On average, it takes between 4 and 6 months. However, some cases are faster – and some take much longer.
Expungement is a process. It begins with your attorney determining whether you’re eligible to clear your record. (If you’re not eligible for expungement, you may still be eligible for sealing – but more on that later.)
If you’re eligible, your attorney will fill out and file a petition with the court. The petition must go through certain channels in the court system. Most notably, it has to go to the state’s attorney – and he or she may object to the petition. If the state’s attorney objects, you may be entitled to a hearing. Your attorney can represent you at the hearing if necessary.
After your petition goes to the state’s attorney, it makes its way to the judge assigned to your case. The judge will make a decision based on the state’s attorney’s recommendation, the information contained in your petition, and your hearing (if applicable).
What About Sealing? How Long Does That Take?
Sealing a criminal record generally follows the same process that expungement does. That means it can take several months (usually 4 to 6 months) for the court to seal your records (or deny your petition).
Do You Need to Talk to a Lawyer About Expunging Your Criminal Record?
If you’re eligible for expungement – or for sealing, for that matter – we may be able to help you clear your criminal record. Call us at 847-920-4540 right now to talk about your options. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll be able to get the fresh start you deserve, provided you qualify.