Expungement Attorneys in Syracuse
Sealing Your Criminal Record in Central New York
Currently, it is not possible to have your criminal record expunged in the state of New York—with some exceptions. Those who are convicted of minor possession of a controlled substance charges and successfully completed the mandatory treatment program(s) may be able to have their records expunged.
You can, however, petition to have your record sealed. What is the difference? Expungement is the process of completely erasing a criminal record whereas sealing a criminal record simply makes it invisible to the general public. A sealed record can still be visible to certain individuals under certain circumstances, including but not limited to law enforcement employers, the military, a parole/probation officer, prosecutors, and other legal professionals.
Learn more about sealing your criminal record—contact our Syracuse record sealing attorneys at (315) 215-0517 today to discuss your options.
How to Expunge a Criminal Record in New York
You cannot “expunge” (permanently erase) your criminal record in New York. However, New York law states that a criminal record may be “sealed,” or hidden from public viewing if it meets specific conditions. Until then, a criminal charge remained on an individual’s record for life—even if that person was never convicted of a crime.
Benefits of Sealing Your Criminal Record
There are a number of reasons you may want to have your criminal record sealed. While a sealed record is still visible to certain individuals, it is generally invisible to most of the public. Sealing your criminal record can counteract some of the negative consequences of being charged with but never convicted of a crime.
Some of the main advantages of sealing your criminal record in Central New York include that doing so will make your record invisible to:
- Potential employers (except law enforcement, military, or other employers that require you to carry a firearm)
- Housing providers and landlords
- School and university officials
- Banks and loan providers
- The public in general
If you’re interested in learning more about having your criminal record sealed in Central New York, contact our Syracuse expungement attorneys for a free consultation today.
Who Is Eligible to Have Their Record Sealed in New York?
Not everyone who is charged with a crime can have their record later sealed. In fact, the criteria for record sealing in New York is fairly strict.
In order to have your record sealed, you must meet the following criteria:
- You were not convicted of the crime for which you were charged
- You were convicted of a misdemeanor and you completed court-mandated treatment program, completed any subsequent sentences after treatment, AND have no pending charges
- You have only two or fewer convictions, only one of which may be a felony
- You must wait 10 years from the date the sentence was imposed or the release date of the latest incarceration (when applicable)
- You were not convicted of an ineligible crime (see below)
Additionally, only certain convictions are eligible for sealing. In order to have your record sealed, you may not be convicted of an ineligible crime.
Criminal convictions that are ineligible for record sealing in New York include:
- Sex crimes (including any crime for which you must register as a sex offender)
- Violent felonies
- Class A felonies
Our firm can help you understand your options. If you are a candidate for record sealing, we can help you begin the petitioning process and work to ensure that everything is in order for a smooth, streamlined process. Even if you are not a candidate for record sealing, our Syracuse criminal defense attorneys can provide you with sound legal guidance.
Give us a call at (315) 215-0517 to schedule a free, confidential case evaluation with our team today.