New Year / Expungement

January 12th, 2022

What better way for anyone to start a new year than cleaning up a criminal record! When convicted of a felony, it will remain on your criminal record until you have the matter expunged.

What crimes can you expunge?

In Louisiana, felony expungements are generally available if the convictions are set aside pursuant to Louisianan Code of Criminal Procedure article 893. However, if the court sentences someone in a manner that did not contemplate expungement or if the conviction was never set aside, other conditions often allow its removal. For example, if there is a ten-year lapse since the date of the sentence and you have committed no other criminal offense, you can often have the violation removed. 

There are exceptions to the expungement rules which prevent certain crimes from being removed from the record. Among those are sex offenses, crimes against minor victims, certain violations of the Uniform Controlled Dangerous substance laws, and domestic abuse battery.  

As with most legal issues, criminal arrests, as well as convictions, will permanently remain on your record unless you take steps to have them removed. They can come back to haunt you years after you have forgotten the mishap even occurred. I often receive calls from individuals who need a matter expunged from their record “yesterday” to maintain their employment. 

What does an expungement protect?

If your criminal record has prevented you from exploring employment opportunities or advancements at your current company, it might be in your best interest to have the matter expunged. Mistakes you’ve made in your past should not dictate your future. The purpose of expunging your record is to ensure the conviction is not available to the public and prevent potential employers from locating the record as you apply for a new job or a promotion. It can also stop the conviction from being available for review when applying for housing.

Regardless of your need for an expungement, remember the entire process can take several months. It is best to go ahead and expunge the matter while it is still fresh on your mind so you can minimize the negative consequences suffered from the indiscretion. Remember, even if you were arrested for a crime and never convicted, the arrest will show up on your criminal history. Do not let that arrest do long-term consequences.  

The expungement laws often change; this references what is available in 2021. If you or someone you know has questions about the expungement of a felony arrest, please do not hesitate to contact Larrion L. Hillman at 318-549-9180.


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