You may be curious about what crimes can be expunged if you live in Orange County—specifically, if you reside in Santa Ana, California. Learn how expungement works under California law and who can help you expunge your criminal record.
Understanding Expungement in California
Expungement takes your criminal record, including your arrest and the subsequent court case, and bars it from the public record. Having your record expunged legally allows you to deny that you were convicted or arrested for the expunged incident.
California defines expungement under California Penal Code 1203.4 as the conviction being “set aside and dismissed.” This does not mean your conviction has been purged, sealed, destroyed, or wiped clean.
However, an expungement can help you get certain professional licenses or pass background checks — although sometimes the crime may appear even after the court expunges it. If a potential employer asks if you have been convicted, you can say that you have not, as the conviction is legally gone. But if you know the employer may run a background check, it may be better to mention your expungement as they may see it when they run the check.
With the passing of Senate Bill 731 in 2022, California will seal many records for ex-offenders after they meet certain conditions. The bill would seal records for those not convicted of another felony within four years and have completed all terms of their sentence, such as probation, incarceration, parole, and supervision.
What Crimes Can Be Expunged?
Not every offense is eligible for expungement, but many are. Eligible offenses in Orange County, CA, include the following:
- Juvenile records
- Marijuana conviction relief
- Relief for some sex offenses
- Felony convictions
Offenses that are typically considered less serious are eligible for expungement. Generally, there is a decent chance your offense is eligible if it did not result in time in a state prison and sex offender registration.
These crimes are eligible because they are considered less serious than ineligible crimes. The bill’s author hopes expungement will help lift barriers for 25% of California’s population. The barriers associated with having offenses on your public record often result in the following difficulties:
- Long-term unemployment
- Chronic housing insecurities
- Lack of civic participation
Crimes That Cannot Be Expunged
Crimes that are ineligible for expungement in California include the following:
Also ineligible are crimes that require registration on California’s sex offender database.
Work With an Expungement Attorney in Orange County, CA
You may qualify to have your criminal offense expunged. To find out if you qualify, a California expungement lawyer can help determine your eligibility.
A qualified and experienced attorney can help facilitate the expungement process for you by handling the following:
- Guiding you through the process
- Filing your paperwork
- Completing administrative tasks related to your case
- Ensuring your deadlines are met
- Giving you the best possible chance of successfully expunging your offense
The Law Office of Salvatore Ciulia can help you expunge your criminal record. Sal Ciulia is an experienced criminal defense attorney with over 35 years of experience working on issues ranging from serious criminal offenses to expungements. Whether the offense you seek to expunge is related to theft, robbery, drunk driving, or another offense, you are in good hands with Sal Ciulia. Contact us today to arrange your consultation.