Being arrested for a criminal offense leaves a permanent record, whether or not a person was found guilty. This is where expunctions may be beneficial.
Expunctions in San Antonio
The Texas Department of Public Safety maintains this record at the Texas Crime Information Center (the “TCIC”). Unless these records are expunged, they can turn up on criminal background checks for years.
Obtaining an Expungement or Non-Disclosure in San Antonio
Employers, rental agencies, and lenders all use background checks when making business and rental decisions in San Antonio. Having an arrest or criminal conviction expunged prevents the law enforcement agencies from releasing information related to the criminal charge. Unfortunately, not all criminal convictions are eligible for expunctions. Criminal records that are commonly expunged include the following:
- Certain dismissed cases
- Cases where the prosecutor declines prosecution
- A trial that results in a not guilty verdict, and situations where a Class C Misdemeanor is resolved with a deferred disposition.
In some cases involving Class A or B Misdemeanors, and certain felonies where the trial court ordered deferred adjudication, a client may be eligible to file a motion for non-disclosure. While the criminal record is not expunged, a non-disclosure does prevent law enforcement from revealing the criminal record to anyone outside law enforcement. Typically, people must have completed probation and avoided arrest for two to five years to obtain a non-disclosure order.
Petition for Nondisclosure
An order for nondisclosure is the process for people who have had case in their past that they would like to keep from ending up in public records. The reason someone may want to do this is usually because prior convictions could hinder the ability to get a job. Although nondisclosures do not completely erase records like an expunctions do, it does prevent government agencies from publicly disclosing criminal history information that came about from a prior conviction. With that being said, an order of nondisclosure could very well work in someone’s benefit. A person who receives an order of nondisclosure may deny ever having been arrested or prosecuted for the offense. This is applicable unless the information is being used in another criminal charge.