Having a criminal charge on your record can have a serious impact on your life, impacting both your freedom and your opportunities. Expunging a charge from your record can offer new opportunities. However, not every charge qualifies for expungement. Is expungement an option for you?
What qualifies for expungement in North Carolina?
Expungement allows you to remove an arrest, charge or conviction from your record in some cases. You may be able to clear your criminal record of:
- An arrest that did not lead to charges
- Charges that did not lead to a conviction, whether because the court found you not guilty or because the prosecution dismissed the charges against you
- Certain misdemeanor convictions after completing sentencing terms
- Certain nonviolent felony convictions after completing sentencing terms
- Some crimes involving people who were under a certain age when they committed the offense
In addition, you must not have any pending charges against you.
What does not qualify for expungement in North Carolina?
While the state allows people to expunge various crimes from their records, other criminal convictions do not qualify. These include:
- Felonies not classified as nonviolent
- Felonies that include assault as an essential element of the offense
- Felonies that require you to register as an offender
- Offenses involving a commercial vehicle
- Offenses involving certain drugs
- Certain sex-related or stalking offenses
While not every charge qualifies for expungement in North Carolina, this legal process can offer you the opportunity to move forward to new opportunities.