In some cases, Illinois allows individuals with prior criminal cases to expunge or seal the records related to the case (arrest reports, court documents, clerk’s minutes, etc.) Whether a prior case qualifies for expungement or sealing is complicated, and you should contact an attorney before beginning the process.
Being arrested for any misdemeanor or felony, or even being ticketed for an ordinance violation can have consequences for your criminal record. For many employers and schools, a background check is now standard practice. In the information age, every type of case can be potentially discovered by schools, employers, or governmental agencies. Illinois law is very strict when it comes to expungement and sealing — do not make any assumptions that a case will not appear on your record after a certain number of years.
Our firm can assist you in keeping your record clean. First, we strive to get as many cases dismissed as possible. Second, we believe in using aggressive pre-trial motions to expose the mistakes that the police make. Third, if the facts and our investigation warrant a negotiation, we attempt to negotiate a plea bargain that protects your criminal record. Finally, we take cases to trial in an attempt to win an outright acquittal.
But even when a case is dismissed or an individual is acquitted, employers and schools can still discover the arrest. You should not be satisfied when someone tells you that court supervision is not a conviction” – that does not necessarily mean that it cannot be discovered during background checks.
Our firm can help you expunge or seal prior arrests, dismissals, supervisions, and in some cases, convictions. Our lawyers know the law and the specific paperwork that each clerk’s office requires.
By expunging and sealing your past records, you greatly improve your chances of keeping your record clean. You should hire attorneys at the beginning of the case so that your background is protected from the start.