Can I Get My Past Convictions Expunged From the Record?
For many, a criminal conviction is damaging and far-reaching. Nearly all employers ask if you have a prior conviction. A criminal conviction may even prevent you from obtaining a particular certification or license. It can also affect child custody and personal relationships.
Fortunately, in Ohio, many people are eligible to expunge prior convictions or seal their records. Ohio has expanded this opportunity to defendants. The expungement law defines an offender eligible for record sealing as someone who either:
- Has unlimited low-level felony convictions (regardless of the number of misdemeanor convictions) so long as those felony convictions are not sexual offenses or crimes of violence
- Has no more than two misdemeanor convictions and two non-violent, non-sexual third-degree felony convictions
It is important to know that not every conviction can be expunged. Most sex crimes, violent crimes, crimes that require a mandatory prison sentence, and high-level felonies are not eligible to be sealed. Operating a vehicle under the influence (OVI), or DUI, is another conviction ineligible for expungement. If you have questions about expungeable offenses in Ohio, an experienced Ohio expungement attorney can help. Additionally, the waiting period for a defendant’s eligibility depends on the type of conviction. For example, a misdemeanor conviction can be sealed one year after the case is over; a low-level eligible felony is also eligible after a year; and, an eligible third-degree felony is eligible after three years.
At Rittgers & Rittgers, our Cincinnati expungement lawyers can answer questions about whether you are eligible for expungement and the expungement process. We will also discuss the cost of expungement in Ohio and give you a straightforward explanation of expungement costs paid to the court and the cost of our attorneys’ services.
Expungement of Criminal Records in Ohio
Erasing a conviction from your criminal history can open up many doors, but it is crucial for you to follow all the steps. To convince the court that you are rehabilitated and deserving of an expungement, you need to assemble a compelling motion to seal the record. You may have to appear in court or at least have an attorney appear on your behalf.
Be prepared. The prosecutor will be notified and may argue against your motion to expunge. With so much on the line, it is important for you to choose a reputable criminal defense attorney experienced in misdemeanor and felony expungement cases.
At Rittgers & Rittgers, our Ohio expungement lawyers understand what courts are looking for when they decide whether or not to seal your conviction history. If you need help with an expungement in Warren, Hamilton or Butler counties, contact us for a consultation.