The New Alabama Expungement Law Is Now in Effect - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

The New Alabama Expungement Law Is Now in Effect

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On April 2, 2014, the Alabama Legislature finalized and passed the Alabama Expungement law. The bill (SB108), authorizes a person charged with certain nonviolent felony or misdemeanor criminal offenses to petition the circuit court to have his or her records expunged.

Mobile, AL – July 15, 2014

/PressCable/ — Mobile, Alabama – Alabama citizens who have been charged with non-violent felonies and misdemeanors may now expunge criminal records, under a new expungement law that took effect in July, 2014.

Passed in April by the Alabama state legislature, the Alabama expungement law provides a way for citizens who have been charged with non-violent felonies and misdemeanors to petition the court and have their criminal records officially expunged and cleared from the system. This means that the records – including records of arrest, photographs, references in all forms to the offense, fingerprints, and conviction records in some cases – will be cleared and considered to have not ever existed.

The new law gives citizens a chance to clear their records and move on with their lives. It was passed primarily as a way to catch Alabama up with the rest of the nation, and also give citizens a chance to protect themselves from background checks that frequently result in being passed over for employment opportunities thanks to criminal records.

Petitioners have to meet several criteria before they can expunge criminal records. For misdemeanors, citizens can seek expungement if they were found not guilty, had the charge dismissed with prejudice, or had the charge dismissed without prejudice and it has been at least two years since the original filing without another charge being refiled.

For felonies, citizens can seek expungement if they were found not guilty, had the charge dismissed with prejudice, had the charge declined by a grand jury, completed a drug court, veteran’s court, mental health program, or other diversion program with a one-year wait, had the charge dismissed without prejudice and it has been at least five years without being convicted of a separate offense (and charges haven’t been refiled), or have gone at least three months (90 days) since the charges were dismissed or they received a no-bill from a grand jury.

Under no circumstances can a violent felony be expunged under the current Alabama expungement law. Records expunged will still exist in some capacity for law enforcement purposes, but they will not show up on a criminal background check – providing a boon for those who have had difficulties seeking employment and other opportunities due to their records. Under the new law, those who successfully seek an expungement will not be required to report cleared charges to a prospective employer.

Those wishing to expunge criminal records will pay a $300 administrative fee, in addition to court costs. The petition will include a sworn statement stating that the individual meets all requirements under the law, plus a certified record of arrest (or case action summary), disposition, and a certified official criminal record. Any petition for expungement will give a jurisdiction, via the district attorney, 45 days to file an objection to the request for expungement that the court will consider.

Shane A. Taylor & Associates, P.C., a criminal defense firm in Mobile, highly recommends that those seeking expungement contact expungement lawyers. Expungement lawyers can help citizens navigate the process and prepare their petition properly, as to ensure the highest chances of success. As petitions are up to the discretion of the court, seeking professional help is strongly recommended. Those seeking expungement in Mobile should call on Shane A. Taylor & Associates, P.C. for qualified expungement lawyers who can navigate the system on clients’ behalf with confidence. Interested petitioners should consult with the attorneys at Shane A. Taylor & Associates for the latest advice and guidance on expungement to clear a record and create a fresh start.

Website: http://shaneataylorpc.com/

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