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How can I get a complete background check on myself. : I know I have a class c misdemeanor and I want to find out if there is anything else out there and how to get records sealed or expunged and how much does it cost?

Asked 7 months ago in Criminal Defense

Scott’s answer: The term "expunction" is a legal term and is very limited in its availability. There are other legal mechanisms that can be quite similar, such as a "non-disclosure". Maybe you are correctly seeking these remedies. Perhaps not. A quick call to a qualified criminal defense attorney's office can put you on the right track. We can check court records, determine the status of your case(s) and propose options for you that suit the task at hand. Since class C misdemeanors are usually issued by citation, the records will most likely be located in a Justice of the Peace or Municipal Court system. Please be prepared to tell the attorney's office where you received the ticket in geographical terms, such as the City of ..... or in the County of......... If you don't know exactly, that is OK. We can usually figure it out by asking you a few questions.

Answered 7 months ago.

How to file a motion for time served for a warrant?: My brother has two warrants out in Harris county and Cameron county for traffic tickets but is currently serving time in Nueces county. He has been serving time for going on five months now and will probably be there for a couple more months on a federal charge. So I just wanted some information and how and if it was possible to file for time served. Thanks in advance.

Asked 9 months ago in Speeding Ticket

Scott’s answer: Caution ! Pleading out for credit for time served often backfires! While this option may seem logical, economical, convenient and, at times, even a fortuitous opportunity for an inmate, doing so may cause the person very serious collateral consequences. It is the same as pleading guilty, differentiated only in the form or "currency" --- hard time instead of hard money. But once he is out of jail, he will have to deal with the collateral consequences. Certain convictions may cause DPS surcharges and/or license suspensions. Those surcharges can be hundreds of dollars for each conviction and THEY CANNOT BE DISCHARGED WITH CREDIT FOR TIME SERVED!! I cannot tell you how many times I have talked to people that thought they were doing the right thing by sitting out tickets in jail, only to find out months after their release that they dug themselves deeper in debt by falling into the surcharge trap. Here is a basic review of the Surcharge Program, also known as the DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY DRIVER RESPONSIBILITY PROGRAM
A conviction of an offense under a traffic law of this state or a political subdivision of this state may result in the assessment on your driver’s license of a surcharge under the Driver Responsibility Program.

Your driver’s license will accumulate points as follows:

Conviction for a moving violation, except speeding less than 10% faster than the posted speed limit in a location other than a school zone – 2 points
Conviction for an offense relating to child passenger safety seat systems – 2 points
Conviction for a moving violation resulting in an accident – 3 points
If you accumulate 6 or more points during the preceding 36 month period, you will be required to pay to the Department of Public Safety, a surcharge of $100.00 for the first 6 points, and $25.00 for each additional point.
Each year, the Department of Public Safety will assess a surcharge of $250.00 if, during the preceding 36-month period you have been convicted of “driving while license invalid,” “failure to show proof of financial responsibility (no insurance),” or “operating a motor vehicle while the registration is suspended.”
Each year, the Department of Public Safety will assess a surcharge of $100.00 if, during the preceding 36-month period you have been convicted of “driving without a valid license.”

A closing thought on outstanding traffic cases. Two common types exist. The "capias" warrant-type is a distinguished from the "bondable" warrant-type case in this important regard. In the capias type of situation, a person has gone to court and entered a plea of either guilty or no contest and then, thereafter, failed to pay or failed to complete defensive driving or some other failure to complete an agreed upon task. If this is the situation, Brother has no good choice. He is either getting credit for time served or getting released to go back into the world with the continuing obligation to pay the court where the ticket is filed. On the other hand, if Brother simply never went to court and never entered a plea of guilty or no contest, he is still presumed innocent and may still plead NOT GUILTY. However, to do that, he will probably have to post a bond on each case. Contact the individual court for bonding information. Bonds can usually be done by cash directly to the court, through a bail bond company or through an attorney in the area.

Answered 9 months ago.

I got a traffic violation for speeding, but I believe it may be in error and want to know if I should fight it.: The officer pulled me over for allegedly going 60 in a 45, but made several questionable decisions and has a history that tarnishes his integrity.

Asked 9 months ago in Speeding Ticket

Scott’s answer: Nobody wants to have a tarnished history, but sometimes people, including police officers, do things that they may later regret. No matter how many good things they may have done, just one bad mistake can tarnish an otherwise stellar reputation. But, our focus here, is on you, not the police officer. You ask "should I fight it?" and the answer for the accused is almost always (if not always) YES! You don't need to be madder than a wet hen to fight, you just have to be brave and understand that it is the State which must prove you are guilty. Until that point, you are presumed innocent, so get in the ring and set your sights on the bell of justice!

Answered 9 months ago.