Gaithersburg Expungement Lawyer
If you have a criminal record, it may seem to create problems for you in all aspects of your life. However, you may have the opportunity to seal your records from public view or ensure that they are destroyed permanently. With the help of a Gaithersburg expungement lawyer, you could prevent prospective employers and landlords from holding your past against you.
By expunging your criminal record, you could have a fresh start both personally and professionally. Speak with a criminal defense attorney today to determine whether you may be eligible for expungement.
Who is Eligible for Expungement?
Expungement is the legal process of sealing past court and police records from public view. This process is typically available to those who have been convicted of non-violent crimes. Although some records are ineligible for expungement.
Under Maryland Criminal Procedure § 10-105, situations in which an individual may petition for expungement include the following:
- The accused party was acquitted
- The charge was dropped
- A probation before judgment was entered
- The individual has been convicted of only one non-violent crime for which the Governor of Maryland has pardoned them
If the prosecutor is no longer willing to pursue the charges in court, resulting in a nolle prosequi, an individual may also be eligible for expungement. A skilled local attorney could review a person’s criminal records to determine whether expungement is an option.
Mandatory Waiting Periods
Once an individual is deemed eligible for expungement, there may be additional mandatory waiting periods before they are permitted to file. For example, under Md. Crim. Procedure § 10-105, individuals may not file an expungement petition based on an acquittal, nolle prosequi, or a dismissal until three years have passed since the disposition of the case. However, there may be exceptions for those who have filed a written general waiver and release of all tort claims arising from the charge.
Those who wish to expunge their record for conviction of possession of marijuana, they are ineligible to do so until the later of four years after their conviction or completion of their sentence. Although these waiting periods are typically required, the court has the discretion to grant an expungement petition at any time based on good cause shown. An experienced attorney could help anyone seeking early expungement of their record.
Expungement Procedures in Gaithersburg
After an individual files a petition for expungement, the court must serve a copy of the request on the State’s Attorney. Unless the State files an objection within 30 days, the court shall grant the petition. If the State’s Attorney files a timely objection to the petition, however, the court must set a date for a hearing.
Following the hearing, if the court finds that the petitioning party is eligible for expungement, the court must grant the petition. Conversely, if the court finds that the petitioning party is ineligible for expungement, the court must deny the request. An expungement lawyer in the area could identify the common grounds for the denial of an expungement petition.
Call a Gaithersburg Expungement Attorney Today
The existence of a criminal record can make life difficult for those applying to jobs or housing. If your petition for expungement is granted, you are not required to disclose information about your conviction to prospective employers or landlords.
A Gaithersburg expungement lawyer could help you clear your record and enhance your ability to find work. Call our office today to discuss your case with a dedicated legal professional.