If you’re like many people, you have a criminal history that’s holding you back from doing things you want to do, such as finding a better place to live, getting the right type of job, or even attending school. However, there may be hope: You could be eligible to seal offenses on your criminal record. But can you seal a theft conviction in Illinois? Here’s what you need to know.
If you’re like many people considering expungement or sealing in Illinois, you know you need to have a complete copy of your criminal records – but where do you get them? This guide explains.
How to Get Copies of Your Criminal Records in Illinois
You can get your criminal records from the Illinois State Police, the Chicago Police Department, the police agency that arrested you, or the Illinois Circuit Court.
Getting Your Statewide Criminal History Transcript
You can get your Statewide Criminal History Transcript from the Illinois State Police. It will include all your arrests and convictions from the state of Illinois. (If you have records in other states, they won’t come back on this transcript.)
To get yours, you contact the Illinois State Police at 815-740-5160. You’ll have to be fingerprinted at the police department or go to a licensed live scan fingerprint vendor, who will scan your prints and send them to the Illinois State Police.
Getting Your Records From Chicago Police Headquarters
If you were arrested in Chicago, your records are with the Chicago Police Headquarters. You can get your record of arrests and prosecutions (commonly called a RAP sheet) from them. Your RAP sheet will include all your arrests, charges and case outcomes – but only the ones that occurred in Chicago.
You can pay a $16 fee (cash, check or money order only) to request your RAP sheet at Chicago Police Headquarters (it’s at 3510 South Michigan Avenue in Chicago). They’ll fingerprint you there.
Pro tip: You should also ask for a copy of your Statewide Criminal History Transcript while you’re there. There’s no additional cost for this – and the police can use the same fingerprints to get that report for you, as well.
Getting Your Records From the Circuit Court
You can get your criminal records from the Circuit Court in the district where you went to court. You may have to pay a fee.
Having an Attorney Conduct a Background Check
You can opt to have your attorney conduct a background check for you if you’d like. Your attorney will be able to get your complete criminal history for you.
Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Getting Copies of Your Criminal Records in Illinois?
If you need to speak with an attorney about getting copies of your criminal records in Illinois, whether you want to seal or expunge your record, we may be able to help. Call us at 847-920-4540 or fill out the form below to schedule your free case review.