Minnesota Expungement Lawyer – Leverson Budke
Minnesota’s expungement laws are complex. It’s important to hire an expungement MN lawyer who understands not just the law, but also the specific practices of each Minnesota county. Our attorneys have extensive experience successfully obtaining expungements throughout the state of Minnesota.
Minnesota Expungement Lawyers
If you were charged with a crime in the past, and that criminal record has had a negative impact on your life, contact our skilled Minnesota expungement lawyers to learn how to have that record sealed. Minnesota law now provides an excellent remedy for many Minnesotans who have been accused of criminal behavior. Through the expungement process, a judge can order that some or all of your record be sealed from public view.
Whether you qualify for expungement is dependent on many different factors. It’s best to speak to an attorney with extensive experience in this practice area who can tell you whether you may qualify.
Call 651-829-3572 today for a FREE consultation, with a lawyer that specializes in Minnesota Expungements.
Expungement MN: Helpful Information
A criminal record can haunt you for the rest of your life, no matter how long ago it’s been since the crimes were committed. Perhaps it’s been years since you committed a crime (it could have even been a youthful mistake like shoplifting or a drug offense), but when a potential employer or landlord runs a background check and sees any kind of crimes on your record, it can severely hurt your chances at acquiring a new job or finding a home.
This is where the process of expungement MN can help you. Expungement, also known as “expunction,” refers to the process in which an individual’s criminal records are “sealed,” or locked to public access—meaning that your criminal record will no longer show up in routine background checks. If this sounds like something that might be beneficial to you, go ahead and reach out to an expungement attorney. MN laws have been updated in recent years, and an expungement lawyer in Minneapolis can help you identify if your past crimes are eligible for expungement.
You may hear “expungement” referred to as “erasing your criminal record,” but technically speaking, an expungement of a criminal record does not truly erase or destroy your crimes. The criminal records do still exist, but as they are now sealed and inaccessible, it is true that a Minnesota expungement in some ways effectively erases the criminal record and makes it easier to move forward with life. However, certain agencies can still have access to an expunged criminal record, such as law enforcement agencies, immigration officials, or the FBI (for example). While landlords and most employers will be unable to see an expunged record in a background check, certain employers may be able to use law enforcement to gain access to a sealed record (such as the Department of Education).
We Are Your Expungement MN Lawyer
After completing your sentence, there is a waiting period before you can apply for expungement of your crimes; during this waiting period, you must not be charged with any new crimes. Contact us to get help.
Expungement can be grouped into two categories, either full expungement or expungement of court records only. In a full expungement, the court will order that a record be fully sealed—i.e., both court records as well as records at the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA), police departments, or other departments. Full expungement is what most people are referring to when they speak of expungement, and is generally the more useful form, as this is what prevents a criminal record from showing up in a background check.
Expungement of court records only means that the criminal record may still be available in places such as the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, and is thus still likely to show up on background checks. Not all crimes are eligible for full expungement (as we will discuss below), so the sealed court record may be the most that you can hope for in certain cases. However, because your record will still be available in most background checks, expungement of court records may not be beneficial to you unless you are able to qualify for a full expungement MN.
When determining whether or not you are eligible for an expungement of your criminal record, consider these seven main categories of expungement and ask yourself if you fall into any of these categories
Am I eligible for a Minnesota Expungement?
If you’re looking into the process of expungement for a Minnesota criminal record, a good place to start is by speaking with a Minnesota expungement attorney. The process is lengthy and often complicated, so you’ll need a lawyer to help you through all the details and specifics involved with filling out forms, clarifying laws to you, etc.
Technically, you could choose to represent yourself in court, but with so many details and complications to consider throughout the application process, it is best to hire a Minnesota expungement lawyer. Minneapolis has plenty of lawyers who are well versed in expungement, MN laws related to expungement, and everything else you need to know in order to apply for an expungement MN.
- First time drug offenders (your case was dismissed after successfully serving probation through participating in a diversion program)
- Juveniles prosecuted as adults (you committed a crime as a juvenile but you were tried and prosecuted as an adult)
- Cases “resolved in petitioner’s favor” (the case was dismissed and you [the petitioner] did not plead “guilty,” and you were found “not guilty” at trial)
- Diversion programs and stays of adjudication (you have successfully completed a diversion program, usually connected to drug or theft offense; a “stay of adjudication” means that you pled guilty to a crime, but the court “withheld adjudication”—i.e., did not find you guilty)
- Misdemeanors and petty misdemeanors (you have successfully finished your probation and you have not been charged with any new crimes in two years since completing your sentence)
- Gross misdemeanors (you have finished your probation and you have not been charged with any new crimes in four years since completing your sentence)
- Some low level felonies (you have finished your probation and you have not been convicted of a crime in five years since completing your sentence)
Felony expungement is harder to obtain than expungement of misdemeanors, but it’s not impossible. Some felonies can never be expunged, such as murder, or any crime that requires registration as a sex offender. Felony expungement attorneys in MN can guide you through the specifics of how to get certain felonies expunged from your record.
If you think you may be eligible to apply for expungement but you aren’t sure, just go ahead and talk to an expungement lawyer; Minneapolis is a great place to find a lawyer who can help you with this process.
How long does a misdemeanor stay on your record in Minnesota?
Misdemeanors in Minnesota can be grouped into one of three categories: gross misdemeanor, misdemeanor, or petty misdemeanor. Regardless of the category, these crimes will stay on your record forever unless you apply for expungement.
After completing your sentence, there is a waiting period before you can apply for expungement of your crimes; during this waiting period, you must not be charged with any new crimes. For gross misdemeanors, the time is four years after completion of your sentence before you can apply for expungement. For misdemeanors and petty misdemeanors, the time is two years after completion of your sentence.
How long does a felony stay on your record in Minnesota?
To apply for felony expungement in MN, you must go through a waiting period of five years with no new criminal charges after the completion of your sentence for the initial felony. Like misdemeanor crimes, a felony will also stay on your record forever unless you apply for mn expungement. Some felonious crimes (such as murder, kidnapping, certain sexual assault crimes), can never be expunged from your record.
Of course (as mentioned earlier), it is important to remember that Minnesota expungement is not a true “removal” of your criminal record. It is simply a way to receive a clean background check when run by employers, landlords, banks, etc.
How long does the Minnesota expungement process take?
The process of expungement in Minnesota will generally take at least 4 months; however, on average you should expect the process to take about 5-6 months. You and your expungement lawyer in Minneapolis will first have to obtain your detailed criminal case history; you will then have to collect and fill out all the necessary paperwork, followed by serving those forms to the appropriate offices and government officials. It is crucially important to make sure that your paperwork is served to all the correct government offices, and this is why it is best to have an expungement MN lawyer to ensure that this is all done correctly.
After serving all the paperwork, you will wait to be scheduled for a court hearing. The speed with which you are able to get scheduled will vary depending on the county. After the hearing, even if you are granted expungement in MN, the government has a 60-day period in which they could choose to appeal. It is only after these 60 days have passed without an appeal that your expungement becomes active.
Can you get a DUI expunged in Minnesota?
A DUI (or DWI) is considered to be a very serious crime in Minnesota, and in the past, a DUI could never be expunged from a criminal record unless it could be proven that the initial DUI charge against you was faulty and incorrect. With a new law that took effect in January 2015, it has now become possible to have DUI convictions expunged from your record. There is, however, a waiting period before you can begin the expungement process, and the length of the waiting period is dependent on whether or not you were convicted of a misdemeanor DWI or a gross misdemeanor DWI. Just like any other misdemeanor crimes, he waiting period before you can apply for expungement of a misdemeanor DWI is 2 years, while the waiting period for a gross misdemeanor DWI is 4 years. This waiting period begins after the completion of sentence, meaning that if you are sentenced to 2 years of probation for a misdemeanor DWI (for example), you must then wait 2 more years after you have finished serving your probation before you can apply for expungement of the DWI.
New Minnesota law that makes it easier to expunge your criminal record
In the past, it was impossible to remove certain felonies and other crimes from your criminal record. However, as of January 2015, a new Minnesota expungement law popularly known as the Minnesota “Second Chance Law,” has made it easier to obtain expungement in Minnesota for certain crimes. Expungement lawyers in MN can help you to understand the finer details of these laws and the necessary steps and processes behind getting certain crimes and felonies expunged.
For someone who has served their sentence and taken steps to begin a new life without any criminal activity, it can be excessively disheartening to find yourself turned away from good jobs, potential homes, or even certain loans due to a past criminal record. This is where expungement can help, in giving you a clear background check to potential employers who might be impressed by your credentials to do a certain job but otherwise turned away by a criminal record.
How long do you have to wait to get your record expunged MN?
The length of time before you are able to get a criminal record expunged in MN varies depending on the type of crimes you are trying to have cleared from your record. Misdemeanors and petty misdemeanors are the easiest crimes to have expunged, and generally, you can begin your application for expungement two years after completing your sentence for your crime. Gross misdemeanors require a waiting period of four years, whereas felonies require a waiting period of at least five years before you can apply for expungement. In all of these cases, this waiting period means that you must not receive any new criminal convictions during that time frame.
How much does an expungement cost in Minnesota?
The court filing fee for an expungement application in Minnesota is $325, but this can vary by county, so your MN expungement attorney can double check the fees wherever you need to file.
Attorney fees will vary depending on the specifics of each expungement case, and an expungement lawyer in Minneapolis may charge you differently than an expungement lawyer in another city or state would charge. Because of these variations from case to case, it is impossible to make a blanket statement on how much you should expect to pay for an expungement in MN. Your expungement attorney in Minnesota can go over the specifics of the case with you and discuss the costs of expungement.
It is true that the process can get quite lengthy and expensive, but don’t be discouraged by all the steps and costs associated with expungement of a criminal record. The new opportunities that open up to you with a clean background check in terms of job considerations, housing options, or loan applications make the costs of an expungement well worth it for most people.
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Expungement MN Lawyer
Stop letting your criminal record get in the way of living the life you deserve. Call 651-829-3572 and schedule a FREE expungement MN consultation today.