Make your criminal record match the person you are today.
Court-ordered expungement is the most common route a person will take in clearing their criminal record in Utah. But it is just one of the tools that our attorneys can use to help you make your public criminal record more closely reflect the person that you have become.
Expungements, pardons, and 402 reduction motions are all based on the premise that people can change — and that they do in fact learn and change as they go through life. For both felony and misdemeanor convictions, Utah law provides you with an opportunity to clear your criminal record to make it match the person you are today. Our legal team is eager to help.
Why We Like Working on Expungement Cases
If you ask one of the lawyers here why we enjoy working with clients on the expungement process, you will likely get a response that includes one or more of these points:
- We like hearing success stories.
- We enjoy helping our clients share their success stories with the court.
- We really like helping them open doors to a better future for themselves and for their families.
- We get a huge kick out of hearing from former clients who have gone on to do awesome things with their lives.
- We love proving prosecutors wrong when they said that “so-and-so” would never change.
What do our clients do after (or even before) they get their record expunged?
It can be easy to forget sometimes that “those people” who commit crimes are often the same people that we are proud to call our friends, family, loved ones, neighbors . . . and sometimes even, ourselves.
A person’s life cannot be defined simply looking at their one lowest moment or one worst choice. Some of the best people you will ever meet have, at some point in their lives, made decisions that they have deeply regretted. But that one worst moment does not define the person. It is the decisions and the actions they take today and tomorrow that determine who they are and what they will become. The expungement process helps recognize that fact.
Here are just a few examples of what our clients have done before and after expungement (names and details obviously are omitted for purposes of client confidentiality):
- client finishing medical school, but had done something dumb when he was 18 and getting his record cleared would open doors for him professionally;
- client had been working in the security industry and training law enforcement officers for nearly 20 years, but was just now getting an expungement for some things that happened when he was much younger;
- client kept getting in trouble after finishing high school, but had figured life out and was finishing up a master’s degree program and was going to be looking for employment;
- client had been hooked on drugs as a teenager and twenty-something, but had made a major turnaround and was now ready to start running the family business;
- client had been blocked from getting a management promotion at work based on a prior felony conviction, but after getting the signed order from the court clerk, proudly proclaimed, “I’m going in to HR this afternoon and they’re giving me the promotion”;
- client had given up trying to get a job after getting rejected too many times because of a felony conviction, and instead started up a new business and had 15 years of success in the community before finally learning that expungement was a possibility.
Never give up.
Eligibility for Expungement in Utah
Utah’s Expungement Act contains eligibility rules that vary based on the number of convictions a person has, the length of time that has passed since the last conviction, and the nature of the crime(s) involved. Different rules apply for drug possession charges than for violent felony convictions. A misdemeanor DUI conviction will require a longer waiting period than higher level charges. Enhancement potential and registration requirements also contribute to the eligibility equation. An arrest without a court case filing has different eligibility rules than a case filing that was dismissed.
The statutes are complicated and the process can be confusing. But getting your record expunged is well worth the effort. Let us help.
Utah law recognizes that people can, and do change.
Expungement is just one option for clearing your criminal record in Utah. For felony convictions, a “402 reduction” is another common tool,. In some cases, an application for a formal pardon may be necessary. But Utah expungement law recognizes that people change.
If you have made a turnaround, we would love to help you show the courts that your record is ready for expungement. Let our criminal defense attorneys help you open doors and provide new opportunities.