In the state of Minnesota, individuals who have been charged (and sometimes even convicted) of certain low-level felony offenses and petty crimes may have the option of having their criminal records expunged. However, criminal records expungement is often misunderstood. When a criminal record is expunged, it is not somehow destroyed. Instead, when a court expunges a person’s criminal record, the record is sealed and no longer able to be viewed by members of the public. Consequently, a sealed criminal record will not appear when an employer or some other individual performs a criminal background check on you.
In order for criminal charges, including sex offenses, to be expunged from a person’s record, certain requirements need to be satisfied. The experienced Minnesota criminal expungement lawyers at Gerald Miller, P.A. will be able to determine if your criminal record is eligible for expungement and can assist you throughout the process. Please give us a call today to find out more about how we may be able to assist you with the expungement of your criminal record.
Burden of Proof for Having a Charge Expunged from a Criminal Record
If a person’s criminal charge or record is eligible to be expunged, they must meet the required burden of proof. Specifically, the person wishing to have the record expunged must demonstrate the benefits associated with sealing the criminal record are greater than any disadvantage the public might suffer if the record was sealed. A judge has the final say as to whether or not an expungement will take place.
Criminal Charges Which May Be Expunged
In the state of Minnesota, certain categories of criminal offenses are eligible to be expunged. Those categories include the following:
● Cases where a criminal defendant is adjudicated not guilty for the underlying criminal offense
● Cases where a criminal defendant’s charges are dismissed
● Cases where a criminal defendant did not plead guilty at any time and took part in the court’s diversion program
● Cases where a criminal defendant did enter a guilty plea, but the court entered either a stay of imposition or a stay of adjudication
Depending upon the circumstances surrounding a particular criminal case, people who have incurred new criminal charges – or who have been convicted of a new criminal offense after finishing a court diversion program, adjudication, or sentence – may not be eligible for a records expungement.
Crimes That Are Not Eligible for Expungement
Presently, there are certain criminal offenses that are not eligible to be expunged from a person’s record in the state of Minnesota. Examples of these charges include: aggravated assault convictions; domestic violence criminal convictions; murder convictions; and sex offender crime convictions thar result in the addition of the defendant’s name to the state sex offender list. These criminal convictions are not eligible to be expunged and must remain on a person’s criminal record, except in cases where the defendant appeals the outcome of the case and the court rules in favor of the appeal.
Steps You Must Take to Expunge a Criminal Record
In order to pursue a criminal record expungement, there are certain steps that you must follow. Those steps include the following:
● Making sure that the circumstances of your case and charge qualify you for a records expungement
● Filing a Notice of Hearing and Petition for Expungement with the district court
● Completing a Proposed Order to Expunge Criminal Records form
● Serving a copy of both the petition and the proposed order you filed, via mail, on every government agency in possession of the criminal record or records that you wish to have expunged
● Completing a Proof of Service form and filing it with the court
● Filing both the Petition and the Proposed Order, along with the Proof of Service, via mail to the district court
Once a hearing is set in court, your lawyer and you must attend the hearing, as there is no such thing as an automatic criminal records expungement.
Talk to a Minnesota Expungement Attorney About Your Legal Matter Today
If you have a sex crime charge or other criminal offense on your record, the experienced legal team at Gerald Miller, P.A. can determine if you are eligible to have the charge expunged. For a free case evaluation and legal consultation with a knowledgeable Minnesota expungement attorney, please give us a call at 612-440-4610 or contact us online to learn more about how we may be able to assist you with pursuing the expungement of your criminal record.