Sealing of Criminal Records in Illinois

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 15, 2021

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In Illinois, under certain circumstances, records of an individual’s misdemeanor, municipal ordinance and felony violation(s) in both traffic and criminal cases can be sealed, which means they are no longer available to be viewed by employers or the public. Unlike records that have been expunged, records that have been sealed are technically still available to law enforcement agencies and can be viewed by the public only with a court order.

It is possible to qualify for a seal if:

  • You were released without a conviction; or
  • Your conviction was reversed; or
  • You were sentenced to supervision after a misdemeanor and you have no felony or misdemeanor convictions in the past 3 years; or
  • You were convicted but there is no conviction for a felony or misdemeanor, or you have not been placed on court supervision for the past 4 years.

The following cases cannot be sealed:

Felonies (except Class 4 drug possession and Class 4 prostitution)
Article 11 of the Criminal Code (adultery, fornication, public indecency, obscenity, marrying a bigamist)
Dog fighting
Aggravated assault
Domestic Battery
Violation of an order of protection
Criminal sexual abuse
Sex offender registration offenses
Inhumane treatment of animals

For more information on expunging Illinois criminal records, click on the following articles:

Application Process to Expunge Juvenile Criminal Records in Illinois

Application Process for Expunging Adult Criminal Records in Illinois

Application Process for Sealing Criminal Records in Illinois

Clearing of Criminal Records or Expungement in Illinois

Clearing or Expungement of Juvenile Criminal Records in Illinois

Using an Attorney to Clear or Expunge Illinois Criminal Record

Certificates of Relief from Disabilities and Good Conduct in Illinois

Eligibility for Expungement of Adult Criminal Records in Illinois

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