The 5-Year Waiting Period for Illinois Expungement

When you want to have your criminal record expunged in Illinois, you have to meet certain criteria – and in many cases, that includes a 5-year waiting period between the time you completed your supervision and today.

What Does Supervision Mean During the Expungement Waiting Period?

When the law says your supervision must have been terminated five years before you apply for expungement, it means that you must successfully complete it. That also means no run-ins with the law or anything of that nature.

Which Offenses Require a 5-Year Waiting Period for Expungement?

If you meet the other requirements for expungement, your Chicago expungement lawyer might be able to help you get these items removed from your records:

  • Operating an uninsured motor vehicle
  • Suspended registration for non-insurance
  • Displaying false insurance
  • Failure of a scrap dealer to keep records
  • Domestic battery
  • Criminal sexual abuse
  • Retail theft
  • Some first-offender drug offenses, including some cannabis and controlled substance offenses

Some offenses don’t require a waiting period at all, including:

  • Acquittals
  • Dismissals
  • “Released without being charged”
  • Pardons from the governor that say your record should be expunged

What if You Don’t Qualify for Expungement?

Expungement is a very limited procedure that doesn’t apply to everyone. However, you could still qualify for the conditions required to seal your criminal records. Once records are sealed, nobody is allowed access to them without a court order. In some cases, a sealing can be just as effective as an expungement.

Don’t just assume that you won’t qualify for expungement or sealing, though. Make sure you talk to your Chicago expungement lawyer to find out; he’ll be able to evaluate your criminal records and let you know. (You can get your criminal background report, or “rap sheet,” from the agency that arrested you. You’ll need information from every case, because every case matters when you are trying to have one expunged.)