A person who has been convicted of a crime understands how the existence of a criminal record may affect their ability to find a career. Fortunately, the experienced South Jersey expungement lawyers at Agre & St. John have helped many clients remove charges from criminal records so that they can enjoy equal opportunities to compete for the jobs and professions of their choosing.
The South Jersey expungement lawyers know that some people are unaware of their rights regarding expungements and understand that other people are not sure if they can expunge certain offenses. Reach out to a lawyer if one would like to petition for an expungement. A lawyer can research the case, help file the petition and represent one in court if they must go before a judge or meet with a prosecutor.
Who Qualifies For An Expungement?
If someone has been arrested, charged or convicted of a crime in New Jersey as an adult or as a juvenile, they may be eligible for an expungement of their criminal record.
The expungement process is the removal and isolation of these criminal or juvenile charges on file within any court, correctional facility or law enforcement agency. An expungement would seal any records concerning the apprehension, arrest, detention, trial or disposition of an offense within the criminal or juvenile justice system. If a client is granted an expungement of their record, the arrest and any related proceedings will be eliminated.
Which Crimes Can Be Expunged?
When it is time to file for an expungement, it helps to know the requirements. When clients come to Agre & St. John, they need to ensure that they have met all the requirements for an expungement. These offenses can be expunged:
- Indictable offenses
- Disorderly conduct
- Municipal ordinance violations
- Minor drug offenses
One may notice that these are all minor issues that do not need to remain on criminal records. Clients should review the case with a skilled South Jersey expungement lawyer to ensure that there are no issues that might arise when the expungement is filed. Additionally, the new laws in New Jersey allow crimes to be framed differently to allow for greater expungement of minor offenses.
What Are The Requirements For An Expungement?
A client can file for an expungement if they meet the following requirements:
- They were arrested but not charged.
- They were acquitted or the charges were dismissed.
- They fulfilled the conditions of their sentence, including paying fines or restitution.
- They waited the mandatory time to file.
The waiting period is different for every crime. Indictable offenses have a waiting period of six years. Disorderly offenses have a waiting period of five years. Code violations have a waiting period of two years, and minor drug offenses have a waiting period of one year.
Which Offenses Cannot Be Expunged?
Certain offenses are not included in the current New Jersey expungement laws. These offenses include:
- Crimes involving public servants
- Sex crimes
- Serious drug offenses
- False imprisonment
- Motor vehicle offenses
It is clear that these are very serious offenses. When the South Jersey expungement lawyers at Agre & St. John encounter these convictions, they must let their clients know that these offenses cannot be removed from criminal records.
Clients might also want to address more than the allowable number of offenses. A lawyer will petition for the expungement of offenses that are allowed and will argue to have more expunged if they believe there are extenuating circumstances.
Why Should I Hire A Lawyer?
The New Jersey expungement law states in detail who is eligible for an expungement. If clients have been convicted of certain offenses, they may not be eligible for expungements.
The expungement statute sets out what offenses are ineligible for expungement. If a client is eligible for expungement, a verified petition for expungement will be prepared and then filed in the Superior Court in the county in which the charge arose. That county’s prosecutor will have the opportunity to respond to the petition, but ultimately a judge will determine whether to grant the expungement.
Updated Expungement Laws
New Jersey’s expungement laws have been updated to allow more offenses to be expunged to shorten the waiting period and to make the process simpler. Even so, it is best to hire a lawyer to help with the expungement process. The expungement process is still complicated. Certain offenses cannot be expunged, and a lawyer will review the case to learn what is possible for a client.
Major Changes In New Jersey’s Expungement Law For People Who Have Been Convicted Of Marijuana-Related Offenses
Agre & St. John welcomes inquiries from individuals who have been convicted of any of the following marijuana-related offenses and are looking to expunge them for the following reasons:
- Distribution or possession with intent to distribute under one ounce of marijuana or under five grams of hashish, including school zone and public housing facility violations
- Obtaining, possessing, using or being under the influence of marijuana, or failing to make lawful disposition of marijuana. Paraphernalia charges are included in the expedited expungement law.
Additionally, the waiting period to expunge certain more serious marijuana convictions has been reduced from six years to three years after the date of conviction or the conclusion of probation, whichever is later. Those offenses include the following:
- Distribution or possession with intent to distribute between one ounce and five pounds of marijuana and up to one ounce of hashish
- Violations for the same offenses, even if they occurred in school zones or within 500 feet of public housing facilities
- Possession of more than 50 grams of marijuana or more than five grams of hash in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(3)
The South Jersey expungement lawyers at Agre & St. John work with clients if there are issues with their expungements. A lawyer will frame the case to ensure that their client has vigorous representation. A knowledgeable lawyer knows that some offenses are disallowed, but they might also find that prosecutors are disallowing offenses that would otherwise be allowed. The South Jersey expungement lawyers at Agre & St. John support clients until the expungement process is complete.
South Jersey Expungement Lawyers At Agre & St. John Assist Clients With The Complicated Expungement Process
If you have questions about whether these changes in the law apply to you, please contact one of our South Jersey expungement lawyers at Agre & St. John today. Our attorneys have been successfully guiding clients through the expungement process for years and welcome new clients who benefit from the changes in the expungement laws for marijuana-related convictions. Contact us online or call us at 856-422-8364 for an initial consultation. Located in Haddonfield, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout South Jersey, including Burlington County, Camden County, Gloucester County and Salem County.