FELONY EXPUNGEMENT IN ILLINOIS
Felony expungement means that your criminal record is destroyed by the Clerk of Court, the Illinois State Police, the arresting agency, and the FBI. It is like your case never existed. Whether you won your case at trial or if your case was dismissed, your criminal file is accessible to the public, employers, landlords, and licensing agencies. Your arrest will also come up on background checks. With a highly experienced felony expungement attorney by your side, expunging your record will give you new opportunities and allow you to move on with your life. If your case occurred in Chicago, Cook County, Lake County, DuPage County, Kane County, McHenry County, or Will County, felony expungement law in Illinois allows your eligible record to be permanently erased.
To have your record expunged and destroyed, you must file and prosecute a Petition to Expunge in the County where your case concluded. Illinois felony expungement law allows certain felonies to be expunged. If your case does not qualify for expungement, you may be able to seal it. Most felony cases are eligible to be sealed in Illinois. There are specific waiting periods before you can file for felony record expungement. For some felony cases, you can file for felony record expungement in Illinois right away, and in other cases, you must wait five years. Our felony expungement lawyers have decades of experience helping people get a new start in life.
It depends on how your case concluded. Your sentence determines whether you can expunge your record and how long you have to wait to file for expungement. After the required waiting period has passed, you can file a Petition to Expunge with the Circuit Court Clerk. A court date is usually assigned for most cases. In Court, you must prove to the judge that you are a good person and that the public has no need to keep your record public. You can have witnesses testify as to your good character. You also submit documents to the Court and State's Attorney that show your accomplishments, school history, employment history, letters of recommendation, awards, and other material about yourself. The idea is to paint the best possible picture of yourself to the Court. The judge will consider whether you have turned your life around and are worthy of having your record expunged. Under the rules regarding felony expungement in Illinois, consider the following:
Immediate Felony Expungement in Illinois
You can file immediately to expunge your case if the following occurred:
- SOL - case stricken
- Finding of not guilty
- Finding of no probable cause
- Nolle Prosequi (State not prosecuting case)
- Released without a conviction
- Deferred Prosecution
Five Year Waiting Period for Illinois Felony Expungement
The waiting period is five years after completing your sentence for the following:
- Tasc Probation
- Second Chance Probation
- 410, 710, 1410 Probation
- Qualified Probation
- First Offender Drug Probation
WHICH CASES CANNOT BE EXPUNGED IN ILLINOIS?
- Reckless Driving if you were over 25
- Domestic Battery
- Most sexual cases
- Animal Cruelty cases
- Battery to an unborn child
- Violation of Order of Protection
- Violation of no Stalking Contact Order
- Traffic Offences
- Sentenced to regular probation
Felony expungement in Illinois has changed for the better. You now have an opportunity to erase your record as if it never existed. Even if you are asked if you have had your record expunged, you can legally answer no. Although felony record expungement is not automatic, with the help of an experienced felony expungement lawyer, you will have the best chance of convincing the court that you have turned your life around and deserve a second chance.
DoDo not be discouraged if you cannot expunge your felony case. In Illinois, you can seal almost all felonies. Over the last several years, Illinois felony expungement law has expanded to include most criminal cases. When you seal your record, it gets hidden from the general public, employers, licensing agencies, and landlords. Your record will also not appear on background checks. Although a sealed record does not get destroyed as an expunged record, they share most of the same benefits.
Legal Defenders, P.C., an Illinois law firm with highly experienced felony expungement lawyers, has helped people get through the criminal justice system since 2004. We have represented thousands of clients and have been successful in expunging and sealing felonies and misdemeanors in Chicago, Cook County, DuPage County, Lake County, Kane County, McHenry County, and Will County. If you are looking to get a felony record expungement in Illinois, we focus exclusively on pardons, sealing, and expunging criminal records. Call us at 312-229-5500 for a free consultation with a felony expungement attorney who understands the importance of expunging your felony.