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The Importance of Sealing Criminal Records In New York
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Notice: If you are needing to sue for damages or a victim of a crime please reach out to a civil attorney or the police.
Outside of certain marijuana crimes, there is no law in New York that allows a person to expunge or eliminate a prior criminal record. Instead, New York uses a different process called “sealing” Sealing a criminal record means that the record still exists, however, materials related to the case (fingerprint and palmprint cards, booking photos, and DNA samples may be returned to you or destroyed, Department of Criminal Justice System records, Police records, Prosecutor records, and in some cases, court records, are hidden from the public and can be disseminated.
Sealing Felony and Misdemeanor Convictions
Certain felony and misdemeanor convictions can be sealed under New York Law:
- If you have no more than 2 misdemeanors or no more than 1 felony and 1 misdemeanor conviction and have been crime-free for 10 years.
- If you have successfully completed a drug treatment program. Certain convictions listed under the Rockefeller Drug Law Reform can be conditionally sealed.
- Certain marijuana misdemeanors are expunged and treated as if they never happened.
At Riebling & Payton, PLLC, we have assisted numerous clients seal their prior criminal convictions. Thereby enabling clients to escape the burdens of having a criminal conviction and allowing them to move on with their lives. If you have a prior conviction that needs to be sealed, contact our experienced criminal defense lawyers to find out how we can help you get that done.
Even in the worst case scenario, where individuals cannot have their criminal history record sealed, we can still help you get back some of the rights that were lost as a result of the conviction.
Sealing a Criminal Case Limits Who Can See It
Sealed criminal records can still be seen in limited circumstances and only with permission from a Court, the people who may seek permission are:
- The individual defendant (with identification)
- Someone you authorize to ask for your records (with identification)
- Your employer if you apply for a job where you carry a gun
- Your parole officer, if you are arrested while on parole or probation
- The prosecutor if you move for an ACD on a marijuana charge
- A law enforcement agency only after a request to the court
Get the Assistance of an Experienced New York Criminal Defense Attorney
The Westchester County criminal defense attorneys at Riebling & Payton, PLLC have been helping people seal their criminal records for years. We will pursue all available options in order to help you seal your criminal file.
If you or someone you know has been convicted of a crime and needs help sealing their criminal record or conviction, contact Riebling & Payton, PLLC for a free consultation at (914) 712-6878.