Do you have one or more arrests or convictions on your criminal record in North Carolina? If so, you might be wondering if there is any way to permanently erase these from your record and if so, how many expungements you can obtain.
Arrests that Resulted in a Dismissal or Not Guilty Verdict: Multiple Expungements Possible
In North Carolina, arrests remain a part of your criminal record, even if you were not ultimately convicted of the crime. Generally, for arrests that resulted in either a dismissal or a not guilty verdict, you can have unlimited expungements, unless you have since been convicted of a felony, in which case you will not be allowed any expungements.
Nonviolent Misdemeanor Convictions: Multiple Expungements Are Possible, but Only in Limited Circumstances
Generally speaking, you cannot have multiple convictions expunged from your record, even if they are misdemeanors. It is possible, however, to have multiple convictions expunged in limited circumstances.
First, the charges must be for non-violent misdemeanor offenses. Second, they must have been resolved at the same time or within one twelve-month period of each other. If those two conditions are met, it is possible to have more than one non-violent misdemeanor expunged from your criminal record.
(Most) Misdemeanors and Felonies: Only One Expungement Is Possible
Generally speaking, you are allowed to have one non-violent misdemeanor conviction or one non-violent felony conviction expunged from your record. There are waiting periods imposed for both types of expungements. For misdemeanors, the waiting period is five years from the later of the date of the conviction or end of your probation, and for felonies, that period is ten years. In addition, you cannot have any other convictions on your record or you will not be eligible for either type of expungement.
Violent Misdemeanors, Violent Felonies, and Certain Drug Crimes Are NOT Eligible for Expungement
While expungement is an option for many people, if you have been convicted of a violent misdemeanor, violent felony or certain drug offenses, you will not be eligible for an expungement. Each case is different and additional requirements may need to be met, so it is best to speak to an experienced North Carolina criminal defense attorney who can assess your case and determine whether you qualify for an expungement.
Our Firm Is Here to Help
Attorney Cotten has served hundreds of clients through Wake, Johnston, Harnett, Orange, Sampson, Lee, and Chatham Counties. If you have questions about expunging your criminal record, give him a call or click over to the main page to chat with a legal assistant.