Just about every experience you have with the criminal justice system can appear on your criminal record, such as charges for which you were not even found guilty or convicted. On the other hand, the fact of you getting charged does not mean you have a criminal record. One easy way to check your record is to go on the Pennsylvania State Police web site and order your record. See the link below (go to "how to"). Call us for more details: 412.780.0008.
Evaluate the Type of Charges
If the charges resulted in a conviction, you will not be able to get those charges off your record in most instances. However, charges that were withdrawn, dimissed, or disposed of by ARD can be removed from your record through the filing of a petition to expunge records. Some counties will file the petition for you upon your completion of ARD. However, certain charges are deemed so serious that the state does not allow the same to be expunged. Moreover, even if you (or the county) presents a petition to expunge charges, the process is not automatic, meaning, sometimes there are beaurocractic delays or other problems that necessitate you re-filing your petition. Ultimately, you must confirm that the charges were removed from the state and FBI data bases. Call us for more details: 412.780.0008.
Handling the Complexities
In many cases, the drafting and presentation of your petition to expunge records will be relatively simple for a lawyer to handle, given that lawyers know where the papers go, what needs to be alleged in your petition, and this is mainly alot of paper work. However, in cases involving certain charges (or mutiple charges), the DA will not necessarily consent to the charges coming off your record. In that case, the DA can force your petition to go to a full hearing. Many lawyers handle expungements on a flat fee basis, however, so you'll have all your basis covered right up front. Give us a call if you have any questions. 412.780.0008.
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