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About the Expungement Process

Posted by attorney Jerrell Johnson

If you have recently been arrested and had the charges dropped, you still need legal representation. As many people are unaware, there is no guarantee that a criminal arrest will not follow you into the future. Expunging your criminal record should be your main priority.

Facing criminal charges is arguably one of the most frustrating and emotionally challenging events for a person to endure. To make matters worse, it is upsetting to know that even an arrest can follow the defendant around for the rest of their life. Unless an expungement is sought, it is very likely that the arrest will come back to haunt a person in the future. Just because the criminal charges have been dropped or an attorney has secured an acquittal on behalf of a client, it is not promised that the charges will not resurface from time to time.

In situations such as a job interview involving a general background check or in a person’s attempt to become a public figure, this arrest will be dug up and revealed. Although an acquittal or positive outcome was reached, an employer may view this as an inclination to criminal activity by a potential new employee and turn away from hiring this individual as a result. As one can see, the importance of taking your case through the expungement process is nearly as vital as seeking the acquittal or dropped charges in the first place.

The first step in the expungement process is to review you options. Was your charge dropped? Were you acquitted in the end? If you can answer yes to either of these questions, you should proceed to the next phase of the expungement process. After you have determined that you could potentially be eligible to clear your criminal record, it is highly advised to speak with a criminal lawyer right away. Your attorney will walk you through the entire process and file all of the paperwork on your behalf.

The next phase of clearing your record will be the most complex, as it involves filing a civil lawsuit against the Commonwealth of Virginia. You must do this in order to have your record fully cleared, and the success of the case depends mainly on the preparation and the execution of this lawsuit. The court will then consider what type of crime you were accused of, whether it was the first offense, and if you were acquitted, had the charges dropped, or received a formal pardon by the governor of the state. If you meet these requirements, it is more likely than not that your case will be expunged from your record.

Why does a person seek an expungement after their charges have been dropped? It is important for many people to pursue this option in order to clear the criminal record and prevent this arrest from allowing the person to be discriminated against in the future. Oftentimes, an employer, college admissions department, adoption agency, or any other type of entity that requires security clearance will find this arrest and may hold it against you in the end. If you are looking to expunge an arrest off of your record, don’t hesitate to act. Call your local attorney today.

Additional resources provided by the author

At the Virginia Beach criminal defense law firm of JRLaw, PLC, the legal team is composed of dedicated and hard-working attorneys. The firm, led by Attorney Jerrell Johnson, has many years of experience and serves clients all throughout the Hampton Roads and South Eastern Virginia. They have a background in handling DUI charges, drug crimes, domestic assault, violent offenses, and all other criminal charges. Furthermore, they are available to assist clients in the pursuit of expungements to have their criminal record cleared of an unwanted arrest. For a review of your criminal charges, contact a Virginia Beach criminal lawyer at the firm right away.

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