1203.4 & Other Dismissals
In many cases an expungement can be ordered along with other post-conviction relief such as an early termination of probation or a misdemeanor reduction.
Can my case by dismissed?
California law provides a number of ways to cleanse or clear a criminal record after a conviction. One of the most common ways to “clean up” a criminal record is to apply for a dismissal under Penal Code section 1203.4.
What is Expungement?
Many convictions can be dismissed under section 1203.4, commonly referred to as “expungement.” An expungement does not seal a criminal record; however, it does provide considerable benefits.
Expungment and Probation
In cases where probation is granted an expungement can be granted as soon as probation ends. In fact the Judge must grant an expungement upon request in some cases. In other cases the Judge has discretion to deny the petition.
Expungement and Probation Violation
In cases where the Judge is afforded discretion -such as cases where probation was violated at some point during the probation term -it is important to provide the Judge compelling reasons to support a request for dismissal.
Expungement and DUI
Driving Under the Influence convictions and various other convictions under the Vehicle Code are also examples of cases where the Judge can exercise discretion to deny a request for expungement. In these cases presenting a persuasive argument at the hearing on the petition can also be important.
Other Post-Conviction Relief
A few types of charges cannot be dismissed under Penal Code section 1203.4; however, there are other types of post-conviction relief that can be requested in these cases (a certificate of rehabilitation, for example).
Expungement now available in infraction cases
A recent change in the law allows for a dismissal in many infraction cases and in misdemeanor cases where probation was denied.
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