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How long does a misdemeanor stay on your record?

Saratoga Springs, NY |

My husband had me arrested for signing his name to a check in 2001.It was pleaded down to a misdemeanor because it was my first offense,and I had used the money for bills. My question is this:I am in the process of looking for another job. On many applications it asks if you have ever been arrested for a misdemeanor. When I applied for the job that I have now,they did a background check and I was told that nothing came up in Saratoga County(that is where I was arrested). in New York.I have been told that this stays on your record forever. Is this true,and if so, is there any way to get it off your record? I want to be truthful,but I also don't want this held against me when searching for a job.
Thank you for you time.

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Attorney answers 4


A criminal conviction such as a misdemeanor stays on your record forever in New York State. NY does not expunge convictions.

I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 385-8015 or via email at The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.


I agree with the first answer offered, your conviction for a Misdemeanor stays on your record forever in NY. However, you can make a Motion to expunge that record after a period of time has elapsed and it is discretionary with the judge as to whether your conviction can be expunged and/or sealed. Speak to a local attorney about it.

Good luck.

You may call our office at 516-248-6600 or send an email to us at This answer does not form an attorney/client relationship with anyone and any answers do not constitute direct legal advice and should not be followed unless and until you have spoken with an attorney of your choice.


Aside from certain drug cases - there is no expungement provisions in New York. If you are uncertain what your criminal record shows or if you have one, you can certainly find out for a fee of $60.75

This response is for general information purposes only and does not constitute the formation of an attorney-client relationship. Past results do not guarantee future results.


Typically these things do stay on your record unless they are sealed or expunged. Sometimes background checks are not perfect so in this situation it sounds like it worked out.