Rittgers & Rittgers, Attorneys at Law
Get Your Consultation Today

Sealing Of Criminal Records In Ohio

With the arrival of a new year, many people who have been convicted of a crime start thinking about having the record of that expunged. The Ohio Revised Code refers to the expungement process as "sealing." Ohio law permits a defendant to seal two misdemeanor convictions or one felony and a misdemeanor. Keep in mind that generally a defendant who has three or more convictions on his or her record is not eligible to have any of those records sealed. Certain exceptions exist, however, whereby an individual with more than two convictions may still be eligible. For example, multiple charges that arose from the same incident (such as a defendant who was charged with trespass and disorderly conduct as part of the same course of conduct) would likely be viewed as one conviction for purposes of sealing. Also, minor misdemeanors, such as possession of drugs or drug paraphernalia, do not count as a conviction for purposes of sealing.

In addition to a defendant meeting the eligibility requirements for sealing, the offense or conviction must also be one that is not excluded from sealing under Ohio law. Generally speaking, sexual offenses, crimes of violence, traffic offenses (including OVI), offenses with mandatory prison terms, and first and second degree felonies are not able to be sealed. Even if an offense is not eligible to be sealed, it still counts towards a defendant's overall number of conviction in determining eligibility-so a defendant with two OVI's and one theft is not eligible to have the theft sealed (even though it is a sealable offense). 

If the defendant is eligible and the offense is one that can be sealed then the question becomes how long must one wait before he or she can apply? In Ohio, a defendant must wait one year after a misdemeanor and three years after a felony conviction before he or she can apply. This time period starts at the conclusion of the sentence, not the time of conviction. Thus, a defendant who receives six months of probation is not eligible to apply until one year after the termination of probation.

Finally, defendants should keep in mind that dismissed charges are eligible to be sealed immediately, regardless of one's prior number of convictions. Also, the rules and exceptions for juveniles vary greatly from those outlined above for adults. For any questions about sealing your record or to see if you are eligible please feel free to contact us for a free consultation. 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
  1. Distinguished AV | LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell | Peer Review Rated For Ethical Standards and Legal Ability
  2. Super Lawyers
  3. AVVO Rating 10.0 Superb
  4. Super Lawyers Rising Stars
  5. Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  6. Multi Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  7. The National Trial Lawyers | Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  8. The National Trial Lawyers | Top 40 Under 40

Get Your Consultation Today. Call 513-932-2115.

Rittgers & Rittgers answers its phones 24/7. Call us anytime to secure your consultation with one of our award-winning lawyers. You can rely on us for elite representation from our deliberately small, family-run law firm.

Lebanon Office
12 East Warren Street
Lebanon, Ohio 45036

Phone: 513-932-2115
Fax: 513-934-2201
Lebanon Law Office Map

Cincinnati Office
312 Walnut St., Suite 1600
Cincinnati, OH 45202

Phone: 513-932-7375
Cincinnati Law Office Map

Oxford Office
121 West High Street
Oxford, OH 45056

Phone: 513-524-5000
Oxford Law Office Map

Email Us Today

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Email Us Today