Criminal Record Expungement in Sacramento
Work Toward a Fresh Start with the Chastaine Law Office
Cleaning up your criminal record is not only possible, but can be critical to your future. At the Chastaine Law Office, our attorneys help you to get a new lease on life.
California Expungement Statute
There is no true “expungement” in California, but a Judicial Dismissal pursuant to Penal Code Section 1203.4 is possible and very
beneficial. For the purpose of this information, we will continue to use the term “expungement”.
Who Can See My Criminal Record After an Expungement?
Having your case dismissed pursuant to Penal Code Section 1203.4 prevents most employers from asking you about your conviction or using it against you in the hiring process. If your case is dismissed per 1203.4 you will legally be able to say, on most applications, that you have never been convicted of the crime.
An expungement does not, however, result in a complete erasure of the record. What an employer, or residential leasing company, would see on your background check is different from what law enforcement or professional licensing agencies would see.
While in some cases you would not be required to disclose that you had been previously convicted of the crime, law enforcement agencies and other professional licensing entities will likely be able to see and inquire about the conviction. It is important to discuss with an attorney if you should disclose your conviction on an application after you receive an expungement.
What Crimes Are Eligible for an Expungement?
Most crimes are eligible for an expungement, even if there was a violation of your probation. Felonies in which you were granted probation, and all misdemeanors, are eligible for a dismissal per Penal Code 1203.4. Recently, the law has also expanded to cover those who served an otherwise state prison sentence in a county facility pursuant to Penal Code Section 1170(h). If you went to state prison for your crime, then a Certificate of Rehabilitation will need to be filed.
Reduction of a Felony to a Misdemeanor
Another type of relief, that often goes hand in hand with an expungement is a reduction of a felony to a misdemeanor pursuant to Penal Code Section 17(b). If your conviction could have been charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor is it known as a “wobbler”.
Felony wobbler convictions may be reduced to a misdemeanor. There are several benefits to having your felony conviction reduced to a misdemeanor before having it expunged, such as restoration of your California gun rights. Propositions 47 and 64 are also options to have your felony reduced to a misdemeanor.
Early Termination of Probation
The Chastaine Law Office is also able to assist in the early termination of your probation. Your status as a probationer may limit you from many things. Fortunately, Penal Code Section 1203.3 allows the Court discretion to terminate your probation if you have otherwise completed all of your terms and conditions and can show the Court there is a compelling reason to do so.
Although it is not stated in the statute, it is universally accepted that you should have completed AT LEAST half of your probation term before petitioning for an early termination. It is also possible to file for the felony reduction, expungement and early termination of probation all at the same time.
Certificates of Rehabilitation and Governors Pardon
For felonies and misdemeanors in which you have to register pursuant to Penal Code Section 290, Certificates of Rehabilitation can be of great value and may relieve you of the duty to register. Once the Court grants a Certificate of Rehabilitation, it also acts as an automatic application for a Governor’s Pardon. Either by itself, or with a Pardon, a Certificate of Rehabilitation can really clean up your criminal record.
Speak to Our Expungement Attorney: (916) 932-7150
The attorneys at The Chastaine Law Office are well versed in expungement law and have successfully cleaned up the record of hundreds of clients. Our legal team also knows how to expunge a DUI and help you move on after an arrest for drinking and driving. We have a proven process and want to see every case end with a dismissal.