The Criminal Defense Lawyers at DSK|Law routinely assist our clients clear arrest records in Virginia. Criminal charges have negative consequences even without a conviction. These criminal records can affect eligibility for employment opportunities, housing options, immigration status, and government benefits. A top rated Virginia expungement lawyer at DSK|Law will evaluate your case to determine if you qualify to expunge your criminal records.
In Virginia, convictions do not qualify for expungement. Expungement of criminal records (Va. Code 19.2-392.2) is only available to those who are actually innocent of the charge. As a result, dismissals following a suspended imposition of sentence do not qualify for expungement. The same is true for other first time offender dispositions. This is because these dispositions require a finding that the facts are sufficient to support a conviction. However, after dismissal or nolle prosequi of a charge you may qualify for expungement.
If you were charged with a misdemeanor and have no prior record then you are entitled to an expungement.
If you were charged with a felony or misdemeanor and have a prior record then you must show manifest injustice. In other words, the court must find that the existence and dissemination of information about the arrest and charge cause a manifest injustice.
If you qualify for expungement the first step is to file a petition with the circuit court. It must include certified copies of the charging document or disposition. Next, you must submit fingerprints so the court can obtain your criminal history. After the court receives the criminal history, you must appear for a hearing where the court will decide whether or not to expunge the case. If the Court grants the expungement, it will order that the records be erased from electronic records. The Court will also order any paper files destroyed.
If you have questions about clearing criminal records in Virginia, call DSK|Law and speak with a top Virginia Expungement Lawyer to learn if you qualify.