Having a criminal record hanging over your head for the rest of your life doesn’t sound that great, does it? That record can prevent you from getting a job, finding a good place to live, or even from getting credit – so for most people, the best thing to do is explore expungement and criminal record sealing. But is getting your record expunged worth it?
Here’s what you need to know.
Is Getting Your Record Expunged Worth It?
For the vast majority of people who are eligible for criminal record expungement, the process is definitely worth it. Having a clean record means that you never have to tell an employer you were arrested for a crime; it means you don’t have to tell prospective landlords or creditors, either.
In that way, getting your record expunged is definitely worth it.
However, some people aren’t eligible for expungement. Under Illinois law, you can only expunge arrests, charges and court cases that didn’t result in a conviction (meaning that a court didn’t find you guilty) with very few exceptions, such as those for veterans convicted of certain Class 3 or Class 4 felonies.
Related: Veterans and expungement in Illinois
Don’t lose hope, though. If you aren’t eligible for expungement, you may still be eligible for criminal record sealing. Sealing is a lot like expungement, but it doesn’t completely erase your criminal record like an expungement does. Instead, it limits the public from seeing it. Some people can still see the record, like police officers and court officials (as well as some employers, such as those that require a fingerprint-based background check) – but most people will never even know it’s there.
What to Do to Clear Your Criminal Record
If you’re thinking about criminal record clearing, either through expungement or sealing, it’s a good idea to find out whether you qualify first. You can do that by calling us at 847-920-4540 or by downloading our free e-book, The Complete Guide to Criminal Record Expungement and Sealing, which has all the information you need to start moving forward.
Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Clearing Your Record?
We may be able to help you clear your criminal record. Call us at 847-920-4540 now for a free case review.