What is a conviction?

When you go to court, you are likely going to court for either a misdemeanor or a felony. A misdemeanor is a crime that is punishable by up to one year of jail. A felony is a crime punishable by more than one year of jail.

A criminal conviction is any misdemeanor or felony charge for which you were found guilty. You may have been found guilty by a judge or a jury. You may have also pled guilty pursuant to a plea agreement. The result is the same: a criminal conviction that remains on your record unless agreed upon otherwise.

Another situation where you may be in court is for a traffic violation. If the traffic violation is not a misdemeanor, it is a civil infraction. A civil infraction is punishable by fines and costs only and carries no possible jail term. It is important to note that being found responsible of a civil infraction, or pleading responsible, will not result in a criminal conviction.

If you need to get a criminal conviction expunged off of your record, speak to an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney immediately. Call us at (248) 571-7003 for a free initial consultation.

What does it mean to get my record expunged?

Far too often, an old criminal conviction stops people from being able to move forward with their life and integrate into society in the way they want.

When a conviction has been expunged, that means it has been taken off of your public criminal record. That means any jobs and schools you apply to will not see the convictions if they run a background check. Furthermore, criminal history is an important consideration in certain situations as they relate to housing. Your criminal record follows you for the rest of your life. By having your record expunged, means you are legally able to state on any applications and questionnaires that you do not have a criminal history.

If you need to get a criminal conviction expunged off of your record, speak to an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney immediately. Call us at (248) 571-7003 for a free initial consultation.

Why is it worth it to get my record expunged?

There are several situations where your criminal history may play a big role in the outcome.

  • Jobs: Having a criminal history can affect what jobs you qualify for. If your very livelihood is dependent on you having a clear record, an expungement can be a lifeline to a better income. Additionally, the light that your future employer sees you when you have a criminal history, especially with certain convictions, is very different than without. This affects your work life and ultimately your happiness. You deserve to be treated for the employee you can be, not for something from your past.
  • Schools: No one likes having to answer “yes” when asked if they have ever been convicted of a crime. This is even more true when you are applying for an education program to be what you aim to be. This applies whether you are applying for college, a professional school, and even for residencies and other post-graduate studies. Do not let a conviction anchor down your potential when there is a system in place to remedy the situation.
  • Professional licensing: Having a criminal record may stand in your way of being licensed by a professional board. Imagine getting through your schooling and endless hard work, just to be told that you cannot practice your profession as a licensed individual.
  • Housing: This is especially true if you are looking to rent an apartment or home. There is a stigma around having a criminal history, and if a landlord runs your background, you may not have as many housing options as you would if you get your record expunged. This is an example of how having a criminal history not only hurts you, but it hurts your family as well.
  • Child custody: Often, a court will look to see your criminal history when deciding on child custody situations as well as other situations that require the court to consider the safety of children. For example, this could come into play when the court is considering a visitation arrangement. Although a court is still able to see your criminal history, even if it was expunged, it speaks volumes to the judge and deciding parties when they see that you have taken steps to remedy your past. It allows them to see you in a better light, because they know that the expungement process is not easy and is not something someone would do if they did not truly put in the work.

If you need to get a criminal conviction expunged off of your record, speak to an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney immediately. Call us at (248) 571-7003 for a free initial consultation.

If my record is expunged, does that mean no one will ever know this happened?

No. While it is true that an expungement will clear your public record of the criminal conviction, it is important to note that those convictions are still in a system for law enforcement and the court systems to see.

Your convictions can still be used against you if you have future contacts with law enforcement or the criminal justice system. This could affect you whether you are being pulled over on a traffic stop, or if a judge is considering sentencing conditions for a case. Additionally, your expunged convictions could be used against you for charging a new crime you are charged with as a second or subsequent offense crime.

If you need to get a criminal conviction expunged off of your record, speak to an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney immediately. Call us at (248) 571-7003 for a free initial consultation.

How do I get my criminal record expunged?

The specific steps to apply for an expungement depend on the county where the conviction took place. Generally, the process looks like this:

  1. Complete the application
  2. Gather records
  3. File the application with the county’s court clerk
  4. Serve the application
  5. Complete and file the Proof of Service
  6. Prepare and attend a court hearing

If you need to get a criminal conviction expunged off of your record, speak to an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney immediately. Call us at (248) 571-7003 for a free initial consultation.

If I successfully get my conviction set aside, how long will it take for the conviction to be off of my record?

It takes approximately one month after your conviction is set aside for your record to be cleared. If that time has passed and the conviction is still on your record (which you can check through ICHAT), you should contact the Michigan State Police to see if received a copy of the court order to set aside the conviction. If it has not been received, you need to make sure that it is sent again by the court.

If you need to get a criminal conviction expunged off of your record, speak to an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney immediately. Call us at (248) 571-7003 for a free initial consultation.

Helpful Links:

How to obtain your criminal history

The Michigan Clean Slate Act; What Can Be Expunged?

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