Written by attorney Matthew Arthur Rinaldi

California Petition for Dismissal: A How To Guide

There are no true "expungements" in California, you can only seek a petition for dismissal. It changes your record to reflect a "case dismissed" instead of a plea of "guilty" or "no contest". This is a basic guide for filling out a "typical' petition for dismissal.

Additional resources provided by the author

The California Courts have a more in-depth guide for those seeking the DIY approach to cleaning up their record at: . If all of this is a little beyond you, or seems like a hassle, there's no shame in reaching out to a local criminal defense lawyer to handle the headache for you. I think it's a relatively straightforward petition, but that may just be because I've filled so many of them out in my career.

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