Expunging a Juvenile Record in CT
If you have a criminal record due to past indiscretions when you were a minor, there are different options for you to have the contents of your record erased – or expunged, as it is often referred to. The best way to go about having your record expunged – and reap all the resulting benefits of an expungement – will largely depend on how your case was resolved and you should discuss your options with a knowledgeable Connecticut expungement attorney as soon as possible.
Juvenile cases can be resolved in different ways. First, a prosecutor can choose to keep the case in juvenile court and a juvenile judge will determine whether you are a delinquent (called an adjudication of delinquency). On the other hand, a prosecutor may seek to transfer your case to adult criminal court and, in this case, a state judge will oversee your case. If you plead guilty or are found guilty at trial in state court, you will then have an adult criminal record. In either juvenile or state court, your case may be dismissed with no final adjudication or conviction on your record, but there may still be records of the arrest and charges.
The following is some information about ways to have a juvenile record erased in our state depending on the resolution of your case.
For dismissed cases – If you faced allegations as a juvenile and the case was ultimately dismissed without adjudication, Connecticut law orders that any records of the case be erased right away. You do not have to file a petition for this erasure to happen, as it should happen automatically. If you were a juvenile who was charged as an adult in state court and the prosecutor dropped the charges, the records will be erased after thirteen months. Simply put, if your case was dropped, you should not have to take any additional action to obtain an expungement.
If you were adjudicated delinquent in juvenile court – If you were found to be a delinquent and have completed all required supervision mandated by the juvenile court, you may qualify for the juvenile record to be erased if the following are true:
- You are 18 years old or older
- You have no pending juvenile or criminal cases
- For serious offenses, four years have passed since you were released from supervision
- For non-serious offenses, two years have passed since you were released from supervision
- You have had no convictions for offenses that are considered to be misdemeanors or felonies in state court
- You can show good cause for the erasure
In addition to the above circumstances, some juveniles are adjudicated as “youthful offenders.” If this is the case and you have no subsequent felony convictions, your record should automatically be erased when you turn 21.
If you were convicted in state criminal court – For convictions in state court, you must apply for a pardon like anyone else seeking to expunge an adult criminal record. No one has the right to a pardon under the law – instead, the Board of Pardon and Paroles has the discretion to expunge records when deemed appropriate. There is a waiting period and a complex application process, so it is always best to discuss your expungement with a lawyer who has experience handling this type of case.
Discuss Your Options with a New Haven Expungement Attorney Today
There are many benefits to having your record expunged and, once your convictions are erased, you may enjoy those benefits almost immediately. The legal team at Duffy Law is committed to helping clients clear their names whenever possible. Please call 203- 946-2000 to speak with an expungement lawyer regarding your case.