What kind of lawyer doI need to get a criminal record sealed?

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What kind of lawyer doI need to get a criminal record sealed?

When Iwas 16 years oldIi was hanging out with my friends and I was at the wrong place at the wrong time. Now I have an assault on my record. I amabout to be 20 years old andIi still have this on my record. I have done everything – I went to the court to set a date, I have called for them to set me a date, now they are telling me that I have to get a lawyer to do a seal application. I’m not sure what that is. How long is the process with this kind of case and how much money would I be looking at? Should I speak with a criminal defense attorney? I’m in Fort Worth, TX.

Asked on August 24, 2010 under Criminal Law, Texas

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You can start to educate yourself on the process in Texas by going to the website for the Texas Department of Public Safety.  They have a criminal records division that will help you - especially if you were a minor  - determine the best way to go.  States differ on their laws on criminal records.  They range from sealing a record to "expunging" a record.  Whether or not a conviction is able to be sealed or expunged depends on the facts and circumstances around it.  It is also important to remember to ask about not only the conviction but the arrest.  You can also obtain a referral for an attorney from this state bar association or your local bar association.  A criminal attorney would be familiar with the procedure.  And ask about the fees - legal and court - up front.  Good luck.


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