How can I clear my criminal record? 45 Answers as of May 16, 2011

I have a ticket from when I was a minor for petty theft and 1 as an adult for pety theft I have warrants for failing to appear for court. I just want to pay to clear my whole record. Please help .

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Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider | Peter Goldscheider
You will need to file a petition under PC 1203.4 as to the adult conviction. Your juvenile prior doesn't require an expungement but you might be able to get help from the Juvenile Probation department. Space does not permit an entire explanation here so you probably should obtain a free initial consultation from a criminal law specialist.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/16/2011
Thomas J. Tomko Attorney At law
Thomas J. Tomko Attorney At law | Thomas J. Tomko
In Michigan, an expungement of a criminal record is possible. However, it is only possible for a single offense. If you have more than one criminal offense on your record, you cannot get an expungement. I hope that this was helpful.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 5/16/2011
Howard W. Collins, Attorney at Law
Howard W. Collins, Attorney at Law | Howard W. Collins
Call my office to arrange for a telephone conference. You obviously need to get this cleared up. It will cost you some attorney fees so be prepared, but really, the investment should pay off in the long run.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 5/16/2011
Law Office of Michael Brodsky
Law Office of Michael Brodsky | Michael Brodsky
While every state and even courts within a state all have different procedures, you will almost certainly have to appear in court to quash your warrant before you can resolve your pending charges.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 5/16/2011
Bloom Legal, LLC
Bloom Legal, LLC | Seth J. Bloom
What you are looking for is referred to as an Expungement in Louisiana. You can attempt to file an expungement on your own but it is an actual court proceeding and is usually best handled by an attorney due to the fact that the process may eventually involve status hearings and other complicated legal matters. You should hire a criminal defense lawyer who will be able to file all of the necessary motions for you in court. When you speak to an attorney they will be able to quote a rate for you and inform you of associated filing fees etc.
Answer Applies to: Louisiana
Replied: 5/16/2011
    Jules N. Fiani, Attorney at Law
    Jules N. Fiani, Attorney at Law | Jules Fiani
    You can only expunge 1 criminal offense off your record if you have no other criminal offenses. The offense you received as a "minor", how old were you? If you were 17 years or older, you cannot expunge your record because you would then have 2 criminal offenses on your record. Visit my website for more information.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Office of Tracey S. Sang
    Law Office of Tracey S. Sang | Tracey Sang
    These matters are all handled differently: the juvenile offense is not part of your record; the adult conviction for petty theft may be expunged if you successfully completed probation; warrants for failing to appear can only be cleared by appearing before a judge. Sounds like you may have an open case or two if you have failures to appear. You need an attorney's help. Feel free to call my office.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
    Both a juvenile and adult record for petit theft can be expunged. An expungement does not clear one's record, rather it seals the record form unauthorized viewing. Only certain eyes will see an expunged record, so a normal record check will find no record, but a check from law enforcement will discover the record with the notation that it has been expunged. In order to clear active warrants, one must surrender and have the warrant served, then there must be a resolution of the underlying charge in court. An attorney should be consulted for expungement or warrant service.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Offices of Karen Kilpatrick
    Law Offices of Karen Kilpatrick | Karen Kilpatrick
    I can probably help, but need a little more information. Do you have current warrants outstanding now? In which county or counties? The first step, if you have a warrant, would be to make a motion to quash the warrant and settle the case. Then the next step would be to either seal or expunge the record, depending on the outcome. Feel free to contact me directly.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Office of Michael Moody
    Law Office of Michael Moody | Michael Moody
    You must file a request for expungement to remove a record of arrest. You file the request for expungement in the law enforcement jurisdiction where it occurred. If you pled guilty, i.e., you paid the fine, etc., then an expungement won't work. You have to obtain a governor's pardon in order to have an arrest removed. The petition for pardon must be filed through the governor's office. It is discretionary, meaning not guaranteed. The longer it has been since the theft conviction, then the greater your chances of success. As I'm sure you've learned, any type of theft conviction or even just an arrest for theft on your record kills any meaningful job opportunities.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    That would depend on what class of offense you had and whether you have completed probation and paid your fines and costs. Some crimes, DUII, Sex Offenses, Serious Violent Felonies, Kidnapping and Murder are forever. They cannot be removed. For felonies, you need the following:
    1. All fines and fees have been paid in full.
    2. You have no new or pending charges.
    3. Three years have passed since your DOC probation was concluded.

    For Misdemeanors, you must have the following:
    1. All fines and fees are paid.
    2. Five years have passed since you finished probation and paid fines and fees, and
    3. You have had no new criminal law violations or pending charges.

    I have helped many people clean their records. I do so for a flat fee of $2,800 and can usually get things cleaned up within a month or two. This would also be a good time to have your gun rights restored and I would do that as part of clearing your records. Since a petition would have to be filed, there are filing fees you would have to cover. I can give you better details if you would like to contact me.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Office of Richard Williams
    Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
    There is no way to clear a criminal record.If you have warrants outstanding you may surrender yourself to the jurisdiction where the warrants were signed or you may file a pleading with the court where you were to appear to set aside the warrants to set the matter for disposition.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Offices of John Carney
    Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
    You cannot expunge a record in New York, it must be vacated by a motion called a 440.10 motion for good cause shown. That is rare and expensive. The bench warrants will always be on the NYSIS computer, they cannot be removed, they can only be vacated if you were in jail on another case or had a good reason not to appear and only if your attorney gets the court to not enter it into the record and remove it from the file.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    For you to handle this, you must turn yourself into the court[s], with or without an attorney, and try to negotiate a plea bargain on the warrant and new Failure to Appear charges, and the outstanding charges. Doing so voluntarily will result in a better outcome than you being brought in cuffs to court after arrest on the warrant. That will happen if you come in contact with law enforcement or customs anywhere in the US. Effective plea-bargaining, using whatever legal defenses, facts and sympathies there may be, could possibly keep you out of jail/prison, or at least dramatically reduce it, and may enable you to get your probation and programs reinstated. If this is a misdemeanor, the attorney can appear in court without the defendant being present, and any plea bargain deal could be handled by notarized paperwork. Any fines could be paid by mail. Jail time, if any, would create an obvious problem requiring the defendants presence. While this isn't a 'capital case', you certainly face potential jail and fines, so handle it right. Unless you're competent to effectively represent yourself in court against a professional prosecutor trying to put you in jail, most people hire an attorney who can. If serious about hiring counsel to help you in this, and if this is in SoCal courts, feel free to contact me.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
    You need an attorney to go with you to court to help you with this. You need to go in before you get arrested.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Harris Law Firm
    Harris Law Firm | Jennifer C. Robins
    The first thing you need to do is clear the warrants. You will likely have to turn yourself in to do so, though some courts allow defendants to schedule a voluntary out of custody appearance date. As far as clearing your record, each state has different time lines for expunction. In Oregon, you have to wait three years from the date of conviction for a theft charge, but you also have to be conviction free for the ten years preceding your request to clear your record.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Edward  D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law
    Edward D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law | Edward D. Dowling IV
    You may be able to apply to the court to get the convictions expunged. You should hire an attorney to do this.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Office of Andrew Subin
    Law Office of Andrew Subin | Andrew Subin
    You can file a motion to have your conviction expunged. Most criminal defense attorneys should be able to help you with this.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Berner Law Group, PLLC
    Berner Law Group, PLLC | Jack Berner
    You may be able to expunge one of your crimes off your record, depending on the circumstances and timing. If you reside in Western Washington, feel free to call me to schedule a free initial consultation-either in person or by phone-about your situation.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Palumbo and Kosofsky
    Palumbo and Kosofsky | Michael Palumbo
    You need to retain counsel and surrender on the warrant. We can represent you.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Theodore W. Robinson, P.C.
    Theodore W. Robinson, P.C. | Theodore W. Robinson
    There is no way to "clear your record" in NY state. However, your record from when you were a minor (if you were under 16 at the time) is likely already sealed or expunged. As for the Warrant, the best thing to do is consult with an attorney and get the attorney to accompany you to court. But don't wait, get it done right away, the longer you wait, the worse it gets.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Michael Anthony Wing, P.C.
    Michael Anthony Wing, P.C. | Michael Anthony Wing
    Depending on where your crimes occurred, you may still be able to expunge the records, but not if it was Mobile, AL. You are left with the pardon process through the Board of Pardons and Paroles. You need to get yourself on an "add on" docket to get the warrant lifted on your failure to appear. Hire a lawyer, if you can afford one. If not, tell the judge, so he or she will appoint you one. Stay well.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    You will need to have the warrants taken care of first. I'm happy to discuss how we can resolve the warrants and keep you from going to jail. Please give me a call.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C.
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C. | Craig Elhart
    Since there is more than one charge, clearing the record may not be possible. However, if there are outstanding charges, you can contact the court or prosecutor in the county where the charges are pending and they should be able to tell you what steps would be needed to answer the pending charges. For more information, contact us.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    The Law Offices of Mark Kotlarsky
    The Law Offices of Mark Kotlarsky | Mark Kotlarsky
    Need a lawyer, cannot get it done easily.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Harden Law Offices
    Harden Law Offices | Leonard D. Harden
    RSA 651:5 Annulment. You must wait 1 year for misdemeanor or 5 for B felony, 10 A felony from when sentence ended.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Law Office of Sam Levine, LLC
    Law Office of Sam Levine, LLC | Sam L. Levine
    Preferably, you should consult with a criminal defense attorney in your area to get your record cleared. Every state is different. Good luck!
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 5/13/2011
    Kelly A. Broadbent, Esq.
    Kelly A. Broadbent, Esq. | Kelly Broadbent
    In Massachusetts, to clear the warrants you need to appear at the various courts and resolve the cases. Depending on the severity of the charges, you may want to have a lawyer go with you to court so the courts do not hold you on bail.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Since you have a FTA, the case was never resolved. In order to expunge a record you have to have successfully completed probation. Since your case is still open, this option is not available. I would suggest getting an experienced lawyer to deal with the pending case first. If a dismissal or reduction can be earned, maybe an expungement won't even be necessary.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Law Office of Joe Dane
    Law Office of Joe Dane | Joe Dane
    You're not going to find an easy out. You're going to have to face the open case and the warrant. Only your attorney - a good local criminal defense attorney that routinely practices in the court where your case is pending - can advise you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Law Offices of Phil Hache
    Law Offices of Phil Hache | Phil Hache
    What is your failure to appear for, the petty theft as an adult? If so, there is likely a bench warrant for your arrest and you will have to get that cleared, and address the charge against you. Call me to discuss further. A lot of details to go over on how to best handle your case.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Expert Bronx Criminal Lawyers
    Expert Bronx Criminal Lawyers | Alexander Sanchez
    If you have a criminal record, you cannot clear it. It remains on your record. But it sounds like you may not have a criminal record because the case is still open, although a warrant has been issued. Therefore, the warrant must first be removed, and then an attempt can be made to dismiss the criminal case.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Law Office of Rankin Johnson IV, LLC
    Law Office of Rankin Johnson IV, LLC | Rankin Johnson IV
    If you have pending warrants right now, you should talk to a lawyer. If you don't you can't get that cleared unless you turn yourself in to the police. Whether you can get your record expunged depends on the details. Juvenile records are sealed automatically. There is nothing to expunge. Adult records can generally be expunged if they are for Class C felonies or misdemeanors, not traffic offenses, and your probation has been over for three years (if you have one conviction) or ten years (if you have two or more). Again, talk to a lawyer, or check the county courthouse for forms and do it yourself. If you qualify, it's not very hard, but a lawyer can save you some hassle.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Law Office of Jonathan T. Sarre
    Law Office of Jonathan T. Sarre | Jonathan T. Sarre
    Although you may be able to pay a fine at some point to take care of these cases, you'll probably have to show up in court at some point first. Once you do that (or in some jurisdictions if you retain a lawyer, the lawyer can get the warrant lifted without you showing up personally or at least without you going to jail first), you can potentially clear things up. Plus, depending on how old these warrants are, the witnesses may no longer be available for trial which could lead the state to drop the charges or you may even be able to make an argument that your right to a speedy trial was violated and thus the court has to dismiss the charges. I'd start talking to lawyers who practice criminal defense in your state.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    The Law Offices of Gabriel Dorman
    The Law Offices of Gabriel Dorman | Gabriel Dorman
    First, petty theft is a misdemeanor offense. You cannot just pay your way out of any consequences. Second, it is unclear from your question whether you have actually been convicted of petty theft. In any case, you really need to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you. If you have not yet been convicted of petty theft, you should do everything possible to avoid a conviction as a theft related conviction can have devastating consequences to your future including disqualifying you from future employment opportunities. I hope this answer was helpful. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    What clear your whole record? If you have open warrants, you need to either appear in court with an attorney to address the warrants or turn yourself into the jail. Unless you are found not guilty of all of the charges, they will always appear on your criminal history. Only an experienced criminal attorney can help. Check out my website.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Kevin Smith, Attorney at Law
    Kevin Smith, Attorney at Law | Kevin Smith
    In Connecticut, you can "clear" your criminal record by applying for a pardon. You can apply for a provisional pardon, which is for work purposes only, at any time, but you must wait three years from the date of a misdemeanor conviction and five from the date of a felony conviction before you can apply for a full pardon. However, if you have pending warrants you will have to address those first, and you should call an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Edward A. Kroll, Attorney at Law
    Edward A. Kroll, Attorney at Law | Edward A. Kroll
    Depending on the charges and your location, it may be possible to have your criminal record expunged. In other words, it would be as if the crimes never occurred. Most criminal attorneys can help you file expungement paperwork for a fee. I would check in your area for such an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Mercado & Hartung
    Mercado & Hartung | Stephanie Hartung
    Certain charges can be removed from your record provided specific requirements have been met. As long as those requirements have been met, a motion can be filed with the court to vacate the criminal history. In order to file the motion a lot of paperwork must be completed and provided to the right people. I can offer you more detailed answers if I speak with you specifically. If you currently have warrants out for your arrest, those must be resolved. Feel free to give me a call, free of charge, for more answers.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Rothstein Law PLLC
    Rothstein Law PLLC | Eric Rothstein
    The only way to clear warrants is to go to court and deal with them. You should retain an attorney who can deal with the cases ahead of time. I am a former federal and state prosecutor and now handle criminal defense so feel free to check out my web site and contact me to discuss the situation.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/12/2011
    Austin Legal Services, PLC
    Austin Legal Services, PLC | Jared Austin
    In Michigan, you are only eligible for an expungement (setting aside your criminal record) if you only have one conviction on your record including misdemeanors and juvenile offenses. If you have more than one, sorry to say that you are not eligible.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/12/2011
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