People make mistakes, but if your mistake was a felony, it can haunt you for years. Do you really have to live with the consequences forever, or is there something that can be done? Many people hear about expungement and wonder what it means to expunge a felony in Angleton, TX—and whether they can expunge their own. Read on to learn more.
What is expungement?
Expungement simply means that your conviction or arrest records have been sealed. This means that it’s as if the crime did not happen—if you are asked whether you’ve been arrested for or convicted of a crime, you can honestly (legally) answer “no.” As you can imagine, expungement can make a huge difference in gaining employment, in addition to other areas.
Expungement varies from state to state, and not all crimes are eligible. In Texas, it means that your records are sealed, they cannot be released for any reason and you don’t have to disclose that they ever existed.
Can felonies be expunged in Angleton, TX?
If you’ve been placed under arrest for a felony in Texas, you have the right to expungement if:
- You were arrested and tried for an offense, but the indictment either wasn’t presented or it was quashed due to mistakes or misinformation; or
- You were arrested and released, and the charges did not result in a conviction; and
- Preceding the date of the arrest, you had not been convicted of a felony in the prior five years.
You can also have your records expunged if you were tried and convicted, but were later acquitted (whether on appeal or otherwise) or pardoned. This will not apply if you’re being tried for other crimes.
How to expunge a felony in Angleton, TX
If you believe you qualify for expungement, the best way to go about the process is to work with an attorney. An attorney can help you file the appropriate motions and act as your representative at the hearing, which is typically scheduled about a month after you file the initial motion. You could be granted expungement at the hearing itself, but it may take up to six months to register. Alternatively, if your expungement is denied, you can request an order of non-disclosure instead. This will seal your records from the public, but certain government agencies will be able to request them.
Texas also allows you to expunge or get an order of non-disclosure for misdemeanors, too, provided you satisfy the above conditions. Make sure you talk to a skilled attorney before deciding how to proceed—there may be other options you haven’t considered.
Whatever you choose to do, take care to stay on the right side of the law—especially if you’re waiting for your hearing. If you were to be arrested for another offense (especially a similar one), judges will probably not look kindly upon it.
When you’re arrested and need help making bail, Brazoria County Bail Bonds can help. Call us today—we look forward to assisting you.