Can I get shoplifting charges dropped and off my permanent record?

UPDATED: Feb 1, 2017

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Feb 1, 2017Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can I get shoplifting charges dropped and off my permanent record?

Can I get shoplifting charges dropped and off my permanent record? I was
charged with concealing merchandise or shoplifting of around 200-250. This
is my first offense, I have a clean record.. other than this charge. No warrants, no
tickets, nothing. I was wondering if I can get this off my record so that this
offense wouldn’t hinder me of getting a job or effect my future. I am 21 years
old, still in college, live in New Jersey, and I made a stupid mistake. Please help.

Asked on February 1, 2017 under Criminal Law, New Jersey


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

In a case in which a defendant has no prior criminal record, the courts allow for a special probation called "diversion", "deferred adjudication", etc. This is an alternative sentencing tool that allows an individual clear their criminal record upon successful completion. IThe way it works is: the defendant goes to court and pleads guilty to the offense. The judge then issues a probation (typically community service, payment of the fine and/or restitution). When the sentence is fully completed, the plea is withdrawn and the case is dismissed. Basically, the case is "diverted" out of the criminal justice system, so you will be left with a clean criminal history record. At this point you may want to consult directly with a criminal law attorney. Since diversion is only available to first-time offenders, if they can get the charge dropped on a technicality, etc, then it will still be available to you in the future should you ever need it.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption