For many individuals, having their record expunged means a fresh start in life. Criminal convictions stay on records for a long period of time, leaving a huge impact on a person’s life as they try to find employment, housing, and other means. The expungement process is not always easy to endure but with the help of an experienced attorney, you can receive successful results in your case. Learn more about how to get an expungement below.
Understanding the Expungement Process
Expungement is a process of erasing a criminal conviction so that an individual can begin anew. When somebody goes through the expungement process with the courts, they are asking them to destroy or seal their criminal conviction from state or federal records. This means that it will be removed from the defendant’s public record so that they can move forward and obtain the employment they desire, find housing, and many other aspects that would have been difficult for them if they had not had their record expunged.
Unfortunately, for many, record expungement is a long and drawn-out process that can take months or years to seek results. However, in the past few years, expungement has gotten easier in New Jersey with the passing of new laws.
New Changes to Expungement in New Jersey
Many individuals are looking for a streamlined process to have their record, including felonies, taken away and their crimes of the past put behind them. Many people are faced with the reality that it can take up to ten years to have a crime expunged from their record, putting them at risk for missing out on numerous opportunities. Now, some changes have been made in New Jersey.
The requirement on the length of time before a conviction can be expunged has been recently lowered from 10 to six years. This means that, once your judgment has been entered, only six years must pass before you can go through the expungement process and ask for it to be removed from your record. An option exists in New Jersey known as the “early pathway” as well, which means that you can work to have your record expunged after only five years.
The early pathway can be incredibly expensive compared to waiting the six years to have your record cleared, but the option is entirely up to the person and their circumstances. This waiting period applies to criminal convictions, not including disorderly conduct offenses. A person who has been found guilty on these crimes only has to wait five years to have those offenses expunged.
This also means faster results for those who are hoping for a juvenile expungement. Individuals with juvenile records that are hoping to have them sealed will also not have to wait as long, just like their adult counterparts. They used to have to wait five years to file for expungement, but now they only have to wait three.
Seeking Legal Help with an Expungement
With so many changes, the court system can seem entirely complex. Many individuals are hoping for a successful expungement from the time they receive their verdict and now have hope that the process will be much easier and will not be as time-consuming. With many types of applications and deadlines to meet, it is important that those hoping to endure the expungement process will speak with an attorney about their options.
Contact An Experienced Westmont Criminal Defense Attorney About Your Criminal Charges In New Jersey
Have you been charged with a crime in New Jersey? A criminal conviction could leave you with a permanent record, and it could result in your driver’s license being suspended for a very long time. That is why it is imperative that you speak with a qualified criminal defense lawyer about your case. Criminal defense attorney, Jill R. Cohen represents clients charged with assault, drug crimes, theft and related offenses in Westmont, Camden, Cherry Hill, and throughout New Jersey. Call 856-242-7177 or fill out our confidential online form to schedule a consultation about your case. We have an office located at 210 Haddon Avenue Westmont, NJ 08108.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.