If you or someone you love has been placed under arrest for a felony or misdemeanor crime, it’s only natural to worry about how this event will impact your future. Even if you are never formally charged, the record of your arrest could follow you around and impose restrictions on your employment and housing options. In Texas, you may be eligible to petition for an expunction of your non-conviction record, allowing you to deny that the arrest occurred. You’ll no longer be required to disclose this information when applying for a job or for housing, and the court and law enforcement agencies will be prohibited from releasing the expunged record. The only time you are still obligated to acknowledge that the arrest occurred is when you are under oath. If you think you may be eligible to pursue an expunction in Texas for an arrest that did not lead to a conviction, read below to learn more.
Eligibility Requirements for a Non-Conviction Expungement
If you were placed under arrest and then acquitted or pardoned, or if no conviction occurred, then you may be able to seek an expunction of this arrest record. You may be able to request that an arrest be expunged from your criminal record if:
- Charges were never filed, and the statute of limitations on all charges that could have resulted from your arrest have expired;
- Charges were filed and then later dismissed and the statute of limitations on such charges has expired; or
- Charges were filed and then dismissed, regardless of whether the statute of limitations has expired, if: There was a mistake or false information indicating the absence of probable cause that you committed the alleged crime; the indictment or information was void; or you successfully completed a pretrial intervention program authorized under Section 76.011 of the Texas Government Code.
While there are other circumstances where you may qualify for pursuing the expunction of an arrest record, it’s best to contact a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney to determine your best path forward.
Once you’ve determined that you meet these basic requirements, you may have to observe a specific waiting period before you can request an expunction. If your arrest did not result in charges of any kind, you may need to wait 180 days for a Class C misdemeanor, 1 year for a Class A and B misdemeanor, or 3 years for a felony before you can begin the expunction process. If charges were filed but then dismissed, you may need to wait for the statute of limitations for any offenses that could be brought against you related to your arrest have expired. Once you’ve met the requirements, you can file a petition. It’s highly recommended that you work with an experienced criminal defense attorney at this phase of the process to make sure that you complete the paperwork correctly.
If you are interested in learning more about requesting an non-conviction record expunction in the Pearland or Houston area, call the Law Offices of Keith G. Allen, PLLC at, call (832) 230-0075 to schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable and experienced criminal defense attorney today.