Criminal Defense

Obtaining an Order of Nondisclosure for a First-Time Misdemeanor Conviction in Texas

Obtaining an Order of Nondisclosure for a First-Time Misdemeanor Conviction in Texas

Having a criminal record can limit your options when it comes to your housing, employment, and child custody or visitation rights. As you attempt to get your life back on track, it can be discouraging to have your past mistakes follow you around and continue to negatively impact your life. In Texas, certain first-time misdemeanor convictions may be eligible for an order of nondisclosure. It’s worth taking some time to explore whether you meet the nondisclosure eligibility requirements and how you can start forging a brighter future today.

Basic Requirements 

An order of nondisclosure is a court order that prohibits public entities, including courts and police departments, from disclosing certain criminal records. In order for a petitioner to be eligible for pursuing an order of nondisclosure, they need to fulfill the following basic requirements:

  1. The individual must not have been convicted of or placed on deferred adjudication for any offense (excluding fine-only traffic violations) at any time after sentencing and during the required waiting period.
  2. The individual must not have been convicted of or received deferred adjudication for offenses that require registering as a sex offender, or for offenses such as: murder; capital murder; aggravated kidnapping; trafficking of persons; injury to a child, elderly, or disabled person; abandoning or endangdering a child; violations of bond in family violence cases; repeated violations of bond in family violence cases; or offenses that involve family violence or with affirmative finding of family violence. 

Qualifying First-Time Misdemeanor Convictions

Those who have been convicted of a first-time misdemeanor offense may be eligible to petition for an order of nondisclosure, assuming that they also meet the basic requirements mentioned above. The following misdemeanor offenses are not eligible for an order of nondisclosure: possession of or selling alcohol to minors; flying, boating, or operating an amusement ride while intoxicated; engaging in organized criminal activity; or any offense that is violent or sexual in nature. If your conviction does not involve one of these offenses, then you may be eligible to petition for an order of nondisclosure in Texas.

Other Important Factors

In addition to having been convicted and placed on community supervision for a qualifying first-time misdemeanor offense, you’ll also need to show that you’ve been discharged and dismissed from community supervision or that you’ve completed your sentence. You’ll need to wait until the appropriate waiting period has ended before petitioning for an order of nondisclosure (ranging from the day your sentence has been completed to two years following your discharge and dismissal). Once the petition has been filed, the court will determine whether the issuance of an order of nondisclosure is in the best interest of justice. 

Learn More Today

For more information about how to pursue an order of nondisclosure in the Pearland area, contact the Law Offices of Keith G. Allen, PLLC at (832) 230-0075 to arrange a free consultation with a skilled criminal defense attorney today.