Record sealing is about making the charges against a person hidden so that it won’t be easily retrieved by any public or private agency. Upon successful Criminal Record Seal, all litigations will be dismissed as if they never took place. While records can still be accessed, the accused individual can behave and carry on with his life as if the offense did not happen.
Why Choose Record Sealing?
Getting your records sealed will make previous convictions and legal proceedings as if they never took place. The process can greatly benefit your employment intentions because you can rightfully say that you have no criminal records. Your records will be treated unstained and so, you’ll be considered qualified for your preferred jobs. You’ll also be eligible to acquire certain professional licenses and special civic liberties which are deprived from convicted individuals.
Upon an individual’s conviction of criminal offenses, certain rights and privileges are likewise taken away. These privileges can be restored to their original state once your records have been successfully sealed:
- The right to cast a vote
- The right to hold and maintain office
- The right to serve on a panel or jury
- The right to repudiate criminal records in job applications
One major reason why people are incited to have their las vegas criminal records sealed is to have better and more extensive employment possibilities. Some companies refuse to accept applicants with criminal records regardless of their skills and credentials. With record sealing done, an applicant can legally refuse to acknowledge his conviction or arrest throughout the whole application process. Applicants can claim that they have never been convicted because the employer won’t have access to sealed records.
Record Expunction versus Record Sealing
Sealing only makes the records unobtrusive to the public eye as well as private and government agencies. However, special government authorities such as the FBI, CIA, and the Gaming Control Board can still regain access and view the sealed records should the need arise.
Expunction, on the other hand, completely erases the record. However, not all offenses can be expunged. Several factors like the case severity and age of majority will be checked prior to record expunging.
At present, the record expunction is not yet available. You may only have your records and offenses sealed but the process still has benefits which similar effects to expunction.
The Process of Record Sealing
The process of record sealing usually takes six to eight months. After the given time, the process does not stop there and the records do not automatically get sealed. You have to request the court to officially seal your record by filing a petition. Record sealing can be done by an individual himself but the processing time will be lengthened and the labor will be exhausting. It is practical to hire an experienced lawyer to guide you along the way. Here’s the step-by-step procedure for record sealing:
- Obtain an updated and verified copy of your criminal offense record from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.
- Produce a stipulation, petition, affidavit, and order that includes:
- The specific arrests which you want to be cleared and sealed
- The name of the police agency that arrested you
- The date of the arrests which took place
- The criminal charges placed on you
- The final disposition of each arrest (whether it ended up with conviction, acquittal or dismissal)
- Mail or drop the necessitated documents directly at the Las Vegas District Attorney Office
- Wait for about 4-8 months for the office’s response. Your request can either be approved or denied with a valid reason provided.
It is possible for you to get all the requirements but it is better to let an experienced attorney handle the paperwork so that there will be an increased chance of approval. Apart from the documents mentioned above, forms, affidavits, and reports should be passed as well. To ensure a hassle-free and formal legal process, having a lawyer assist in your criminal record sealing is a wise step.
Record sealing seems to be a very inconvenient procedure and there are areas that will be significantly considered by the authorities to know if your record is permitted to be sealed. Pending charges cannot be sealed right away. Most importantly, the offense committed will also be examined.
Perpetrated crimes against minors including actual or attempted kidnapping, pandering, prostitution, or false imprisonment is not eligible to be sealed. Typically, sexually-offensive activities may not be sealed if they are done to individuals under the age of 18.
A defense attorney will execute thorough and careful case inspection to determine your chances of getting your record sealed by Clark Country. If your situation is in accordance with the following criteria, your records are more likely to be sealed:
- If your case was dismissed or you were acquitted, there’s a high probability for record sealing as long as no other criminal actions have been filed against you.
- If your conviction has reached the amount of time required without you committing other offenses, you may have your record sealed.
Lists of Criminal Offenses
Before attempting to have record sealing, you are required to comply with the terms of your sentence. The complete closure of your case and sentence will signal the start of the constitutional waiting period. The waiting period has to elapse before petitioning record sealing. During this period, it is mandatory that you to not commit further crimes and offenses or you will forfeit your record sealing opportunity.
The succeeding chart contains the statutory waiting period corresponding to different offenses:
|Class of Offense
|Felony Category A
|Felony Category B
|Felony Category C
|Felony Category D
|Felony Category E
|Misdemeanor Domestic Violence
|Possession of Controlled Substance*
|NRS 455.3363 – immediately upon completion
|Arrest without a conviction
|Immediately after dismissal or acquittal
* For possession of controlled substance, the convicted individual must abide by parole obligations and be declared rehabilitated for the court to seal the record.
Juvenile Records Sealing
In cases where juveniles are involved, the records may be sealed once the convicted minors turned 21 years of age. However, for felony offenses, the defendant has to reach the age of 30 before filing a petition to the court to seal the juvenile record.
Attorney for Criminal Record Sealing
Committing a crime is a serious issue but it does not have to stop there. If you or someone you know wants to have a record sealing, don’t hesitate to ask a Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer for assistance.