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Can a First offense "DUI" & "Fleeing or Attempting to Elude" ever be expunged or erased from a person's criminal record?

Savannah, GA |

Recently, my mom received a copy of her criminal background for a job she was applying for. Back in 2004, she was convicted of first offense DUI & fleeing or attempting to elude police. She did 24 hours of jail and did 12 months of probation, community service, and paid her fines. She's worried about her criminal background when it comes to applying for employment and she was wondering will this stay on her criminal record permanently or are there options for removal?

This occurred in the state of Georgia.

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Attorney answers 4


This will stay on her record permanently. Unfortunately, expungement is not available for convictions.

DISCLAIMER: This is a general interest posting on a public website, regarding general legal concepts. This posting is not, and should not be interpreted to be legal advice to anyone, or to create an attorney client relationship between the poster and anyone. There is no way the amount of information in a website posting could be sufficient for the poster to provide informed legal advice. If you have legal questions pertaining to your situation, you should discuss them with an attorney, in person, and in sufficient detail for that attorney to provide you with confidential, competent legal advice.


You say it was a first offense DUI and that she was convicted. If she plead under the first offender act, the arrest would still show, but the conviction would not. However, what you probably mean is that she received an affidavit in court stating that the conviction or plea was her first DUI in 5 years, which allowed her to get a permit to drive during the suspension period. That is different from first offender treatment for the conviction. If so, the record cannot be expunged at all, and both the arrest and conviction will remain on her record.

The above information is general in nature. In order to obtain more specific and legal advice upon which to base your important decisions, please contact our office directly for a free phone or in person consultation. Robert M. Gardner, Jr. Hicks, Massey & Gardner, LLP 53 W. Candler St. Or 718 Oak St. Winder, Ga. 30680 Gainesville, Georgia (770) 307-4899 (770) 538-0555 serving metro Atlanta and all of Northeast Georgia Bankruptcy, Divorce, Personal Injury, Worker’s Compensation, Medical Malpractice, Adoption, Civil and Criminal Litigation


Unfortunately a Conviction for any crime cannot be Expunged in Georgia under the current state statutes. The arrest and conviction for the DUI and Fleeing/Attempting to Elude will remain on her Criminal History for the Rest of Her life! I know this isn't the answer you were hoping for, but I believe it is accurate under the current Georgia law. Good Luck, George McCranie IV

The information provided in this response to a question is not legal advise and is provided only for general information purposes. My response should not be taken as legal advise as no attorney / client representation exists. Additionally, the information given in this answer is specific to the State of Georgia only and should not be applied to any other state.


In Georgia, unfortunately, a valid DUI criminal conviction cannot be expunged and remains on your record forever. Under OCGA 35-3-37, however, a person can try to expunge a criminal record if he or she believes his or her criminal records to be inaccurate or incomplete. In such a case, he or she may request the original agency having custody or control of the detail records to purge, modify, or supplement them and to notify the center of such changes. Should the agency decline to act or should the individual believe the agency's decision to be unsatisfactory, the individual or his or her attorney may, within 30 days of such decision, enter an appeal to the superior court of the county of his or her residence or to the court in the county where the agency exists, with notice to the agency, to acquire an order by the court that the subject information be expunged, modified, or supplemented by the agency of record. In contrast to a criminal conviction, an ARREST, including any fingerprints or photographs of the individual taken in conjunction with such arrest, can be expunged if the prosecuting attorney determines that the following criteria have been satisfied: (a) the charge was dismissed under the conditions set forth above or specified in OCGA 35-3-37; (b) no other criminal charges are pending against the individual; and (c) the individual has not been previously convicted of the same or similar offense under the laws of Georgia, the United States, or any other state within the last five years, excluding any period of incarceration. In your mom's case, it appears the criminal convictions cannot be expunged and will remain on her record forever. Therefore, your mom's criminal convictions might have serious implications on her future employment prospects, civic appointments, and could result in higher insurance rates, restrictions on credit if noted on her credit report, and myriad other potentially adverse consequences. I know you do not like this answer, but the law is the law.

Mr. Dugan is licensed to practice law in Georgia, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Dugan strongly advises the questioner to consult an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.

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