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Being proactive critical when seeking expungement

Serious criminal allegations will not just go away on their own; you will have to address them one way or another, whether that involves negotiating with prosecutors or going to court. In either case, you will need to deal with the charges against you.

Just like criminal charges won't go away on their own, neither will the record of them. This means that you can be strapped with a criminal record long after you have been convicted or had the charges dropped or dismissed. In these situations, you may be interested in having your record expunged. But again, this will not happen on its own; in fact, it may not happen at all.

Having your record expunged can be very complicated. Not only do you have to meet strict requirements to even be eligible for expungement, there are many reasons why the courts can and will deny your request to expunge your record.

For example, your request for expungement can be denied if you were convicted of a crime, if you have had your record expunged before or if the record includes specific violations.

However, if you are eligible for expungement and there are no red flags suggesting a request would be denied, you can apply to have your record expunged. You will need to complete a Certificate of Eligibility and if your request is authorized, you will complete more paperwork and attend a hearing. At the end of all this, you could have your record expunged.

As you should see, none of this will happen by itself. You will need to take deliberate and timely steps to apply for expungement. Failure to do so could lead to ineligibility or a critical missed opportunity to prevent a criminal record from destroying your future.

If you have questions about expungement, it can be vital that you consult an experienced criminal law attorney sooner rather than later. Doing so can help you assess your legal options and make the moves and decisions you need to make in order to pursue expungement.

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