Many states have provisions for the expungement of criminal records, and North Carolina is no exception. The criteria for the removal of certain offenses usually involve misdemeanor charges and certain felonies of a non-violent nature. A charge of $175 must be paid and two notarized affidavits of proper moral character must be presented to the district attorney’s office in the county the charge occurred. Once the complete paperwork is filed, the final approval often takes from six to nine months.
A brochure published by the North Carolina Justine Center summarizes the information needed to understand expunctions in the state. The document also identifies some of the benefits to a person having certain charges wiped clean of his or her record. A criminal record often places barriers for people looking for employment, housing or family reunification. The crimes open to expunction in the state are essentially limited to three categories:
- First-time convictions for non-violent crimes
- First-time convictions for certain offenses committed between the ages of 18-22
- Charges that were dismissed or deemed “Not Guilty”
Many people who qualify for expunctions never realize them. The largest category for granted expunctions was for charges not resulting in conviction.
According to North Carolina statute, the Administrative Office of the Courts must keep a confidential file of expunctions. In most cases, the granting of an expunction releases a person from having to claim that offense on official paperwork. Particular agencies, though may have access to to these records. To find out if gaining an expunction is easier than in the past, please read this post on criminal expungement trends.