Having a criminal record can affect your employment opportunities, your credit and even your personal relationships. Adults in California can have certain misdemeanors and even felonies erased or expunged from their record as long as they were not sentenced to California State prison. There are several conditions adult offenders must meet in order to get their convictions expunged. The process is, however, different for juveniles.
Having a juvenile record is not always as detrimental as an adult record, but it can have professional, financial and social consequences. Juvenile records in California appear on adult criminal records. At age 18 you become eligible to file a petition to have your records sealed. This will protect your records from the public and they will be completely destroyed within five years.
Your juvenile records are not automatically sealed on your 18th birthday. You must file a petition with the juvenile court to have them sealed. You can begin this process by contacting the Orange County Probation Department, reaching out to an Orange County Public Defender or a criminal defense attorney.
Not all crimes can be sealed and expunged. Individuals who committed a particularly serious crime such as murder will not be able to have their records sealed. Certain other crimes be ineligible for sealing or expungement include arson, robbery, kidnapping, rape with force, attempted murder, assault with a firearm, torture, carjacking, or voluntary manslaughter.
If you are not sure if you qualify to have your record sealed and expunged, speak with an Orange County criminal defense attorney who can help you understand your options. A juvenile record does not have to hold you back in life.
David A. Stein has experience with the Orange County juvenile justice system. Get a no-cost consultation about your options for sealing juvenile records or expunging your record. Get a no-cost consultation on your options for sealing juvenile records or expunging your record. Call (949) 445-0040 today or contact us online by email here.