Indiana expungement law provides a necessary redemption mechanism for individuals who may have made mistakes in the past but have cleaned up their act and stayed away from the criminal justice system for some time. As Indiana expungement lawyers, we often see clients who have criminal arrests or convictions as a result of incidents that occurred in early adulthood or college, but expungement can be used in other situations as well.
How Indiana Expungement Lawyers Can Help
The last thing we want for ourselves and our children is for the mistakes of the past to negatively affect the rest of our lives. Previous arrests and criminal convictions can prevent otherwise productive citizens from gaining employment, obtaining affordable housing, and participating in certain social activities and processes, like volunteering at a child’s school.
A Noblesville, Indiana criminal attorney from Dollard Evans Whalin LLP can help if you are suffering the consequences of a past legal offense. As experienced Indiana expungement lawyers, we have filed petitions for expungement throughout the State of Indiana and are willing to file in nearly any county in the state such as Marion County, Hamilton County, Tipton County, Delaware County, Madison County, Tippecanoe County, Monroe County, Knox County, as well as elsewhere in the Hoosier State.
Our Indiana expungement lawyers can also advise you on what criminal arrests and convictions can be expunged in Indiana, what crimes cannot be expunged in Indiana, and what situations fall somewhere in between.
What Is Expungement?
Expungement is the issuance of a court order sealing or removing an arrest record or criminal conviction from the public record. Expungement is not the same as a legal pardon. While a pardon forgives the remainder of a sentence, it leaves the conviction intact. Expungement, on the other hand, seals the arrest or conviction, effectively erasing such records from access by any but a select few, such as those with a court order or sealed record access for government hiring purposes.
Federal law does not specifically provide a comprehensive process for expungement in general. The only federal law on expungement pertains to certain drug offenses. Even though several federal appellate courts have held that federal judges have the authority to expunge federal criminal records, federal expungements rarely occur.
Indiana Expungement Law Explained by Indiana Expungement Lawyers
To qualify to have criminal records cleared under Indiana expungement law, a person must follow specific timelines to apply, have no new convictions or charges pending, and have paid all fines and costs related to the incident in question.
The procedure to apply for expungement of arrest records is different than the process for expungement of convictions, and the result of an expungement can also vary depending on the type of records involved. Generally, a person whose criminal record is expunged in Indiana should be treated as though an arrest or conviction did not occur. However, Indiana expungement law allows internal records kept by law enforcement or public defenders to be retained, and these records can be considered by courts in any future legal proceedings.
What Crimes Can Be Expunged in Indiana?
If your life is being impacted by old arrests or convictions, it is important for you to know if expungement is an option. What crimes can be expunged in Indiana? Generally, the following offenses are eligible:
- Juvenile arrest or conviction records;
- Records of arrests that did not result in conviction;
- Certain misdemeanor offense records; and
- Certain felony records.
Juvenile offenses and arrests without conviction are usually the simplest expungement cases. Regardless of what is in your criminal record, it is wise to consult with an Indiana expungement lawyer before you proceed with a request for expungement.
What Crimes Cannot Be Expunged in Indiana?
It is equally important for individuals with a criminal history to know what crimes cannot be expunged in Indiana. These are the offenses that cannot be expunged under Indiana expungement law:
- Felony sex offenses;
- Violent crimes; and
- Situations in which an individual has two or more offenses involving use of a deadly weapon.
If you have been charged with or convicted of these crimes in Indiana, you should speak with a Noblesville, Indiana criminal attorney from Dollard Evans Whalin to evaluate other potential options for your case.
Why You Should Consult with Indiana Expungement Lawyers
There is a lot on the line when a person applies to have criminal records expunged. If a petition for expungement is not properly filed, does not contain the appropriate information, or is unconvincing in its arguments, a court may deny expungement. The Indiana expungement lawyers of Dollard Evans Whalin LLP are eager to help you make a new start in life. Contact us today by calling (317) 854-5877 or completing our online contact form.