Prince George’s County Expungement Lawyer
Expungement in Prince George’s County is the legal process whereby the court permanently destroys – or seals from public view – a pending criminal charge or a former criminal record. To qualify for a criminal records expungement, you must satisfy several requirements. You must also be able to convince the court that expunging your criminal record is justified under the circumstances.
The process of having a criminal charge or an entire criminal record expunged is extremely complex and difficult to accomplish on your own. A Prince George’s County expungement lawyer can help you determine whether or not your criminal charge or record is eligible for expungement. If it is, your lawyer may assist you throughout the entire expungement process.
Types of Crimes Subject to Expungement
The primary purpose of a criminal records expungement in Prince George’s County is to clear a non-violent offender’s legal record. A Prince George’s County expungement attorney could help you petition the court to expunge one or more of the following crimes, subject to certain requirements:
- Public urination
- Drinking in public and other alcohol offenses
- Transportation offenses, however, only “must appear” offenses punishable by jail time may be expunged
- Traffic violations
Requirements for a Records Expungement
Maryland statutes detail the various requirements which are necessary for obtaining a records expungement. It is important to keep in mind that while some criminal charges and records are subject to expungement, others are not. A Prince George’s County expungement attorney can determine if a particular charge or record satisfies the following requirements:
- Law enforcement detained, arrested, or confined the accused but the prosecutor did not charge the accused with a criminal offense.
- The accused sustained one criminal conviction, and the underlying offense does not amount to a “violent crime” under the law.
- The accused sustained a criminal conviction, but the underlying charge falls within the “Transportation” or “Nuisance Crimes” section of the Maryland Code.
- The accused’s criminal record existed before July 1, 1975.
- The Governor of the State of Maryland issued the accused a pardon for the underlying criminal offense.
- The defendant is accused of committing a criminal offense, but the prosecutor, for whatever reason, decides not to pursue the criminal charges through the court system, resulting in a finding of “nolle prosequi.”
- The accused is charged with a criminal offense but ultimately sustains an acquittal.
- The accused’s case is placed on the court’s stet docket, contingent upon the accused participating in a drug or alcohol rehabilitation program.
Speak with a Prince George’s County Expungement Attorney Today
Expunging a criminal charge or record has many benefits, the most important of which is that the record is not typically viewable through an internet search. When prospective employers and educational institutions perform a background check, they may not be able to locate an expunged criminal charge or record online when they do that search. Obviously, that can be beneficial for prospective employees and students.
In most instances, a court may only reopen your expunged criminal record if, without your record, someone’s life or property is in danger – or if keeping your record closed seriously hampers a police investigation.
If you are interested in petitioning a court to have your criminal charge or record expunged, an experienced Prince George’s County expungement lawyer is in the best position to determine your eligibility. If you are eligible, a lawyer can then assist you with filing the necessary documents with the court.