If you have been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony in North Carolina, you have probably already experienced some of the impacts that a criminal charge and conviction can have on your life. North Carolina has expungement laws that allow you to clear your criminal record, but they are limited in what they can and can’t accomplish. Nonetheless, any opportunity to clear your record is one that should be take, as this can have multiple positive effects on your life.
What a Conviction Does to You:
- It can prevent you from getting a good job;
- It can keep you from being allowed to carry a firearm;
- It can stop you from getting into certain schools and getting federal financial aid;
- It can keep you from adopting a child;
- It can be a source of embarrassment amongst family and friends.
Being granted an expungement can alleviate or eliminate all of the negative items listed above. As mentioned before, the expungement law is very specific. Here are the most important details you need to know:
- You can only get one expungement in your lifetime in North Carolina.
- Most expungements are reserved for first time offenders
- If you have completed a deferral or diversion program (sometimes called a first offender’s program) and you haven’t received an expungement previously, you can pay $175 to file an expungement to have your record cleared.
- If you were convicted of a non-violent misdemeanor or felony and you completed your sentence more than 15 years ago, you are eligible to file for an expungement with a $175 fee to the court.
- Crimes with an element of assault cannot be expunged
- Only Class H and I felonies and Class 1,2, and 3 misdemeanors can be expunged
- Crimes involving methamphetamines or heroin cannot be expunged
- Any crime with an element of selling or delivering cocaine cannot be expunged
There is a but more fine print to the expungement law, but those are the broad brushstrokes. If you at least meet the criteria listed above, then it is well worth investigating if you are fully eligible to have your record cleared. To take the next steps in the process, call a Raleigh expungement lawyer for a free consultation.