January 22, 2021

How to Get a Criminal Record Sealed in Illinois

When you’re accused of a crime, you may face penalties for it even if you were never convicted. Even if your case never went to court, your arrest may show up on a criminal record. And even if you complete your sentence, your record may haunt you. That makes getting employment, housing, and other needs more difficult than ever.

When you’ve had trouble with the law, you may need to know how to get a criminal record sealed. Luckily, your Illinois defense attorney can guide you through the record-sealing process. Once your criminal record is sealed, you have a chance to make a fresh start, so work with your lawyer now, not later.

When Can My Criminal Record Be Sealed?

Whether or not you’re found guilty, any arrest or charging of a crime creates a criminal record. If you were booked at the police station, you have a record in the system. Unfortunately, that record can impact your life even if you’re not convicted. While some employers or landlords may give you a chance to explain the record, many may reject your application outright.

But sealing your criminal record can help. As it is, your criminal record can be found in databases where others can see it. If your record is sealed, only law enforcement agencies can see the record. If your record is expunged, the records are destroyed, leaving you with a clean slate.

But the sealing of a criminal record is only available in certain situations. For example, if you were charged with certain crimes, you may be ineligible for sealing. Likewise, you can’t seal your records until you’ve completed your sentence and other requirements for sealing. Your lawyer can review your record and requirements before you file.

Illinois’ Criminal Record Sealing Process

Once you and your defense lawyer have determined you’re eligible for record sealing, you can then start the criminal record-sealing process. First, you need to get copies of your criminal record and complete the appropriate paperwork for your case. The judge will need all information available about your case.

After your paperwork is complete, you and your lawyer can file that paperwork with the court clerk. Your lawyer can make sure the paperwork is complete and accurate, and they can ensure you file your paperwork correctly.

Then, you’ll receive a court date, where the judge will decide whether to approve or deny your request for sealing. Your lawyer can represent you in the courtroom, defend your future, and help you to clean your record.

Get Help Sealing Your Criminal Record

When you’ve been accused of a crime, that arrest or accusation on your record can hurt your future for years to come. But in some cases, you don’t have to accept these ongoing penalties for a crime you weren’t convicted of or for which you’ve already served your time. The problem is, you may not have the resources to seek getting your criminal record sealed.

When you’re seeking record sealing, reach out for a lawyer at Chicago Trusted Attorneys™. We can help you look into getting your record expunged or sealed, depending on the details of your case. To learn more about your options, call 312-519-3171 or complete the following online contact form.