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Eligibility for Expungement in New Jersey

When someone desires to have their criminal record expunged, the key issue is whether that person is eligible for expungement. It is usually easy to determine eligibility because New Jersey sets out strict guidelines governing which crimes may be expunged. However, there are some exceptions, so an attorney should always be consulted. My name is Anthony N. Palumbo, New Jersey criminal defense lawyer, and I have been expunging criminal records for over 35 years.

I am available to discuss your legal issues with you in person at my law offices or over the phone at 908-643-6801 , anytime, day or night with no charge or obligation.

Expungement is a process that requires a lot of cooperation from many different legal agencies and officials. As an attorney who has worked successfully on both sides of the law, I have great relationships with officials in the legal community, and when I seek expungement on behalf of a client, I am taken seriously and my requests are treated with efficiency. If you would like to expunge your record, the information below should provide you with a general overview of whether you are eligible, but you should always consult with an attorney just to be sure.

What Criminal Records Can Be Expunged?

While most New Jersey crimes can be expunged, many serious crimes are still ineligible for consideration. Federal crimes cannot be expunged, except in rare situations. If you have been convicted of one of the crimes listed below, you are not eligible to have your record expunged in New Jersey:

  • Kidnapping
  • Arson
  • Murder
  • Terrorism
  • Child pornography
  • Child endangerment
  • Drug distribution
  • Sexual assault

If you are unsure whether your criminal record can be expunged, I can assist in reviewing your case and informing you of your options.

What Are The Waiting Periods?

Whenever a person seeks to have a record expunged, there is a mandatory waiting period that must expire before the process can be implemented. The mandatory period is different depending on the crime the individual was convicted of. The waiting period begins on the last day of supervision (i.e. last day of parole or prison). Notably, waiting periods only apply to those convicted of crimes. Dismissed charges have no mandatory waiting period for expungement.

Fortunately, changes to the expungement law in 2018 introduced sweeping changes, including reduced waiting periods for many. Waiting periods are as follows:

  • Felony or indictable criminal offenses: Six-year waiting period
  • Disorderly persons offenses: Five-year waiting period
  • Petty disorderly persons offenses: Five-year waiting period
  • Juvenile offenses: Three-year waiting period.

Depending on your situation, you may be eligible for expungement prior to the full waiting period through the early pathway option. Work with an experienced attorney to determine your eligibility for this option.

How Many Convictions Can Be Expunged?

According to changes in New Jersey’s expungement laws in 2018, individuals with more than one conviction for a felony or indictable offense on their record may still expunge just one conviction. However, individuals with multiple disorderly persons offenses or petty disorderly persons offenses may seek to wipe four such convictions from their record through expungement. All juvenile charges can be expunged unless the juvenile was convicted of an adult crime that cannot be expunged. 

The number of convictions eligible for expungement will depend entirely on your unique situation. Notably, there is no limit to expunging arrests which did not result in a conviction.

Don’t Navigate The Expungement Process Alone

If you are interested in having your record expunged, I can help you. Contact me today to determine your eligibility, and if you are eligible, we will begin the expungement process. As a highly respected attorney in the legal community, the necessary criminal agencies are always willing to work with me on expungement matters, making the process run that much smoother for my clients. Call 908-643-6801 for a free eligibility consultation at no obligation. Alternatively, send me an email through my online contact form.