Expungements

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New Expungement Law 2021 in Alabama

The Alabama legislature and Governor Ivey have finally passed an expungement bill that will allow certain persons convicted of non-violent crimes to have their records wiped clean. This law, which we have pushed for for years will soon allow people with long-ago convictions for certain low-level crimes to apply to have their records wiped clean. The Alabama Legislature approved an expanded expungement bill that was signed into law by Gov. Kay Ivey this week. The bill is called the Record Expungement Designed to Enhance Employment and Eliminate Recidivism Act – or the REDEEMER ACT. It would allow people with certain nonviolent misdemeanor convictions to apply to have their records expunged if they have met certain conditions. It will help people who made a mistake in their past move forward by removing their convictions from public records. Thereby making them much more employable. It is similar to the laws in other states that wipe away misdemeanor convictions after a person serves their time or probation. Its goal is to help people who made mistakes in the past to put it behind them. Thereby making them more employable and capable of taking care of themselves, their families and contribute to to society.

Alabamas old expungement laws only allow people to apply for expungement if the charges are dismissed, your found not guilty or you have finished some type of diversion program. The new law will allow people with convictions for nonviolent misdemeanors, municipal ordinances and minor traffic offenses to apply to have their records expunged provided they meet certain conditions. The conditions include having paid all court costs and fines, completed probation and all other requirements in their case. Violent crimes, sex offenses and major traffic convictions would not be eligible for expungement. The big surprise to the law is this, people who were convicted of felonies but later pardoned could also apply to have the conviction expunged. This is a dramatic shift from the previous expungement laws in this state. We are also offering the only LOWEST FEE GUARANTEE in the State of Alabama. Call 24/7 to find out just how low our attorney’s fee can be for an expungement in the State of Alabama. We are preparing petitions now. Call now 256-534-3435 or 256-350-7200. We are here to help you get your life back in order.

Previous Expungement Laws Still Exist

Have you been charged or convicted of a misdemeanor, traffic offense or a non-violent felony? If yes, you soon will be able to have your record expunged, and erased from public view. The attorneys at Ferguson & Ferguson are helping lead the way by preparing the documents required to expunge records in Morgan, Madison, Jackson, Cullman, Dekalb, Limestone, Lawrence and every other county in the State of Alabama. The flood of petitions is beginning, and you can count on the attorneys at Ferguson & Ferguson to lead the way. We offer a no obligation, FREE CONSULTATION to all expungement clients. We are also offering the only LOWEST FEE GUARANTEE in the State of Alabama. Call 24/7 to find out just how low our attorney’s fee can be for an expungement in the State of Alabama. We are preparing petitions now. Call now 256-534-3435 or 256-350-7200. The law goes into effect July, 2014. We are here to help you get your life back in order.

Who’s Eligible for a Misdemenaor Expungement in Alabama?

Under the 2014 law, no misdemeanor convictions could be expunged. Beginning July 2021, people who have been charged in Alabama with traffic violations, municipal ordinances, violations, misdemeanors may have records expunged if one of the following conditions are met:(old law)

  • The charge was dismissed with prejudice and more than 90 days have passed.
  • The charge has been no billed by a grand jury and more than 90 days have passed.
  • The person has been found not guilty of the charge and more than 90 days have passed.
  • The charge has been nolle prossed without conditions, more than 90 days have passed, and the charge or charges have not been refiled.
  • The indictment has been quashed and the statute of limitations for refiling the charge or charges has expired or the prosecuting agency confirms that the charge or charges will not be refiled.
  • The charge was dismissed after successful completion of a drug court program, mental health court program, diversion program, veteran’s court, or any court-approved deferred prosecution program and the program was completed at least one year prior to filing.
  • The the charge was dismissed without prejudice more than one year ago, has not been refiled, and the person has not been convicted of any other felony or misdemeanor crime, any violation, or any traffic violation, excluding minor traffic violations, during the previous two years.
  • When the person proves by a preponderance of the evidence that the person is a victim of human trafficking, that the person committed the misdemeanor criminal offense, violation, traffic violation, or municipal ordinance violation during the period the person was being trafficked, and that the person would not have committed the offense or violation but for being trafficked.(New)

Beginning July 2021, people who have been convicted in Alabama with traffic violations, municipal ordinances, violations, misdemeanors may have records expunged if all of the following conditions are met:(new law)

  • All probation or parole requirements have been completed. Including payment of all fines, costs, restitution, and other court-ordered amounts. This must be verifiable with the applicable court or agency.
  • Three years have passed from the date of conviction.
  • The person was not operating a commercial vehicle at the time and convicted of any of the offenses enumerated in 49 C.F.R. § 383.51.
  • The conviction is not a violent offense, provided in Section 12-25-32.
  • The conviction is not a sex offense, as provided in Section 15-20A-5.
  • The conviction is not an offense involving moral turpitude, as provided in Section 17-3-30.1.
  • The conviction is not a serious traffic offense, as provided in Article 9 of Chapter 5A of Title 32.

FELONY CHARGES IN ALABAMA

Under the previous expungement laws of 2014 regarding felony charges, no felony convictions could be expunged. You could expunge certain charges under certain circumstances. The law is essentially the same under the new law. Under the new 2021 Alabama expungement law, a person who has been charged, but not convicted of a felony may file a petition to expunge the record under the following circumstances:

  • The charge was dismissed with prejudice and more than 90 days have passed.
  • The charge has been no billed by a grand jury and more than 90 days have passed.
  • The person has been found not guilty of the charge and more than 90 days have passed.
  • The charge has been nolle prossed without conditions, more than 90 days have passed, and the charge or charges have not been refiled.
  • The indictment has been quashed and the statute of limitations for refiling the charge or charges has expired or the prosecuting agency confirms that the charge or charges will not be refiled.
  • When the charge was dismissed after successful completion of a drug court program, mental health court program, diversion program, veteran’s court, or any court-approved deferred prosecution program and the program was completed at least one year prior to filing.
  • When the charge was dismissed without prejudice more than five years ago, has not been refiled, and the person has not been convicted of any other felony or misdemeanor crime, any violation, or any traffic violation, excluding minor traffic violations, during the previous five years.
  • When the person proves by a preponderance of the evidence that the person is a victim of human trafficking, that the person committed the misdemeanor criminal offense, violation, traffic violation, or municipal ordinance violation during the period the person was being trafficked, and that the person would not have committed the offense or violation but for being trafficked.(new)

FELONY CONVICTIONS IN ALABAMA

Under the previous expungement laws of 2014 regarding felony charges, you could not expunge felony convictions. Under the new 2021 Alabama expungement law, a person who has been convicted of a felony may file a petition to expunge the record if all of the conditions are met:

  • The person has been granted a certificate of pardon with restoration of civil and political rights for the conviction from the Board of Pardons and Paroles.
  • All civil and political rights that were forfeited as a result of the conviction have been restored.
  • One hundred eighty days have passed from the date of the issuance of the certification of pardon.
  • The conviction is not for a violent offense as defined in 12-25-32.
  • The conviction is not a sex offense, as defined in Section 15-20A-5.
  • The conviction is not an offense involving moral turpitude, as provided in Section 17-3-30.1.
  • The conviction is not a serious traffic offense, as provided in Article 9 of Chapter 5A of Title 32.

The easiest way to expunge your record is to hire an attorney who is filing for the expungements. We have prepared the papework and understand how it must be completed. You must do the following:

  • Hire an attorney or do it yourself.
  • File a petition with the circuit court in the location the charge was filed. (County where charged)
  • Petition must include- a sworn statement that the person meets the expungement requirements;- a case action summary or certified copy of arrest and disposition;– a certified copy of the arrest record from the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center;– description of the charges to be considered for removal and description of the agencies involved in the arrest and any incarceration;– the filing fee is $500 plus any court costs;– all court fees, restitutions, fines and fees must have been paid in case to be expunged.
  • A copy of the petition has to be provided to the district attorney’s office, the law enforcement agency and the clerk of court.
  • The DA’s office and the victims have 45 days to file a petition opposing the expungement. If the objection is filed, the court is to set a hearing date at least 14 days after the filing.
  • If no one objects, the court can review the petition and rule without a hearing.

What Happens if the Request is Approved?

The court is to order the expungement of all records in the custody of the court and any records held by any other agency or official, including law enforcement records, except privileged investigation reports by the Alabama Board of Pardons and Paroles and files of the district attorney. The related agencies are then to certify to the court within six months that the expungement has been completed.

What if Someone Ask About the Case?

The charge shall be deemed never to have occurred. The court must reply that “no record exists on the matter,” and the person shall not have to disclose the related facts on job or credit applications and other applications. A petitioner must disclose the “fact of the record” to any government, regulatory or licensing agency, any utility or its affiliates or any bank or financial institution.

The agencies have to send the records to the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center which will archive them in a protected file. The records cannot be used for a non-justice purpose and can only be made available when a criminal justice agency provides notice of an investigation of the individual. All arrest records, booking or arrest photos, index references for public records searches and other documents or electronic files concerning the arrest or charge are expunged.

Free Consultation and Lowest Fee Guarantee

If you have questions or need to file a petition for expungement, we are here to help. Call now. Call 256-534-3435.