Missing out on the best schools, job opportunities, dream homes and a high income are some of the potential impacts of a criminal record. However, if you have served jail term and/or probation, paid fines, completed community service, fulfilled restitution orders and other penalties associated with your conviction, you deserve to live without your record following you.
Fortunately, it may not have to. In 2020, Gov. Roy Cooper signed The Second Chance Act into law. It allows certain convictions to be expunged, or removed, from a person’s record. Let’s look at who can benefit from this law.
People with a misdemeanor or Class H or I felony convictions before they were 18
If your conviction falls into this category, it can be expunged when you file a petition as long as the offense occurred before Dec 1, 2019. However, traffic offenses and offenses that led to being listed on the sex offender registry can’t be expunged.
Those with convictions for nonviolent charges
People whose offenses were nonviolent can expunge all their misdemeanors and one nonviolent felony conviction. However, you have to wait at least five years after the date of conviction to file for the expungement of one nonviolent misdemeanor, seven years for more than one nonviolent misdemeanor and 10 years for a nonviolent felony conviction.
Having a clean record after making a mistake can be a relief to many people. It can also open up a multitude of opportunities that would have otherwise been closed to them. That’s why it’s wise to seek experienced legal guidance to have the best of a successful expungement.