Seattle Traffic, DUI and Criminal Defense Attorney

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Vacating/Expunging Your Record

Many people have something in their backgrounds they wish would just simply go away, whether it’s an embarrassing moment or a comment taken out of context. But many also have something a bit more serious…a prior criminal conviction that you want removed from your record permanently. This prior conviction can affect your ability to get a job, promotion or coach a youth sports team.

Fortunately, Washington allows an individual to remove one criminal conviction through a legal process called expungement. An expungement or “vacating” a record is the process of clearing a past criminal conviction and actually removing it from your record. This also allows you to accurately state that you do not have a criminal record if asked. Only certain misdemeanor and felony criminal convictions are eligible for the expungement process and specific requirements must be met before a judge will grant this request.

Some misdemeanor convictions that may be eligible for expungement include:

  • Assault 4th Degree
  • Theft 3rd Degree
  • Reckless Driving
  • Negligent Driving

Some felony convictions that may be eligible for expungement include:

  • Burglary
  • Criminal Trespassing
  • Class B & Class C Felonies
  • Drug Offenses

This process is complicated and you need experienced attorney to prepare, work with the prosecutor if necessary, and present the proper documents to the court. A request to expunge a prior conviction is discretionary by the judge, so it is imperative that it be done properly in order to be successful. I have successfully expunged and vacated many records from past clients and many new ones who simply did something in their past they regret and want a new start.

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