Ohio Expungement Lawyers
Helping Clear Your Criminal Record
An expungement is the sealing of arrest or conviction information. If you were charged with, plead guilty to, or found guilty of a crime, that information will show up on your criminal record. The public, including potential employers and landlords, can access your history. This can present various hurdles in your life. For instance, your relationships with friends or members of the community might be affected. An employer might decide not to hire you. A landlord might decline your application. Or you could be denied on an application to purchase a firearm or obtain your CCW license. These are just a few of the challenges you can face when a past mistake shows up in your history. But seeking and being granted an expungement can clear many of the obstacles. However, the process is not always straightforward. To ensure you successfully petition and effectively present your argument for an expungement, retain the services of an experienced lawyer.
At DiCaudo, Pitchford & Yoder, our attorneys have over 50 years of combined experience. We have helped Ohio residents with various criminal defense matters, including expungements. Our team will explain the process and your legal options to help you understand what to expect. Recognizing the importance of having a clean record, we'll develop a compelling case to present to a judge.
Schedule a free consultation by calling us at (330) 787-9841 or contacting us online today.
What Offenses Can Be Expunged in Ohio?
You are eligible to seek to have your record expunged if you were arrested for or convicted of specific offenses and a certain amount of time has elapsed after your final discharge. Final discharge means you completed your sentence, including probation or community service, and paid all fines. Ohio's expungement law applies to most misdemeanors, fourth and fifth-degree felonies, and some third-degree felonies.
You may not qualify for an expungement if:
- You were convicted of certain sex crimes
- You have more than 5 felonies on your record
- You were convicted of certain violent crimes
- You were convicted of a first- or second-degree felony
- Your crime involved a victim under the age of 16
How Long Do I Have to Wait to Seek an Expungement in Ohio?
Depending on the type of offense you were convicted of, you must wait a certain number of years after final discharge before you can seek an expungement.
The following are the waiting periods in Ohio:
- 1 misdemeanor: 1 year
- 1 felony: 3 years
- 2 felonies: 4 years
- 3 to 5 felonies: 5 years
However, if you were arrested but not convicted, you can apply for an expungement at any time.
Is an Ohio Expungement Automatically Granted After the Waiting Period?
Completing your sentence and paying your fine does not guarantee your expungement will be granted. A judge will review your case to determine whether to approve your request.
When making their decision, the judge will consider various factors, including:
- Whether you have any pending charges,
- Whether you have been rehabilitated,
- Whether the prosecutor has objected to your expungement,
- Whether the court has a legitimate need to maintain your record
This is why it's crucial to have a lawyer help develop a compelling case on your behalf. When you hire DiCaudo, Pitchford & Yoder, we'll analyze your situation and craft an argument that clearly explains why an expungement should be granted.
Who Has Access to an Expunged Record in Ohio?
As noted earlier, an expungement seals your criminal record. That means it won't be publicly accessible. If your expungement is granted, certain employers, landlords, and others will not be able to see your criminal history. Additionally, if you're asked during an interview whether you have a prior conviction, you can lawfully say no.
However, sealing your record does not completely erase your conviction information. Specific criminal justice officials, government agencies, and employers may request it if they have a legitimate need.
Some crimes, however, may be expunged and erased entirely from your record. These convictions cannot be seen by anyone, including government agencies. The only crimes which may be expunged are:
- convictions for improper handling of firearms in a motor vehicle from before September 2011
- certain crimes for victims of human trafficking (e.g., solicitation)
Discuss Your Case Today
At DiCaudo, Pitchford & Yoder, we're here to help clear your criminal record. We have been successful in sealing convictions for our clients, as well as obtaining expungements for clients who have been convicted of solicitation. Our lawyers will guide you through the expungement process and answer your questions and concerns along the way.
To speak with a member of our team, call us at (330) 787-9841 or submit an online contact form. We are proud to help Ohio residents with their criminal defense matters.