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Expungement Attorney in Abingdon and Tazewell, Virginia

A conviction on your record can affect many areas of your life, including where you work, where you want to travel, and even where you live. Records of a criminal conviction can follow you long after you have completed your sentence. Fortunately, there may be a way to expunge some or all your criminal records if you meet certain requirements.  

If you want to have criminal records removed from your history or, at the very least, hidden from public view, place your trust in the Letsen Law Firm. Our expungement lawyer can help you understand whether your records qualify for expungement in Virginia to get you back on track with your goals and future plans.

Our Abingdon and Tazewell law firm serves clients across Russel County and the Virginia side of Bristol City.  

What Is Expungement? 

In Virginia, expungement is a legal process that allows eligible individuals to have criminal records sealed from public view. Eligible individuals are those who have been arrested and charged with a criminal offense but have never been convicted. Expungement applies to the sealing of police and court record related to the arrest.  

Contrary to popular belief, expungement in Virginia will not result in the removal of these records from an individual’s criminal history. Instead, these records are hidden from public view, meaning that only parties with permission from the court can see them.  

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Who Is Eligible for an Expungement?

Arrest and court records can make it difficult to find a job, obtain a professional license, or rent an apartment due to background checks. However, an expungement can solve many of these problems and help you live your life to the fullest. Under Virginia law, the following individuals are eligible for an expungement: 

  • defendants in criminal cases who plead “not guilty” and are subsequently acquitted by a judge/jury;  

  • persons in a civil action charged with contempt of court but subsequently found “not guilty”; 

  • defendants in criminal cases that receive nolle prosequi (the Commonwealth Attorney’s office decides not to prosecute them for all charges); 

  • defendants in criminal cases for a misdemeanor such as assault and battery for which the defendant could also be held accountable in a separate civil action – as long as the person injured by the defendant’s conduct provides a written statement saying that they received adequate compensation for the injury;  

  • defendants who were convicted of a crime but subsequently received an absolute pardon; and 

  • persons whose name/identification has been used without their consent in a criminal case.  

Get the advice of an experienced lawyer to help you get your records expunged. Our expungement attorney at the Letsen Law Firm can review your unique situation and explain whether or not you are eligible to get your records expunged.  

What Are the Benefits of an Expungement?

There are many benefits of getting your records expunged. Some of them include: 

  • More job opportunities. Trying to find a job with a criminal record can be difficult. Since an expungement can remove your records from public view, it will not be accessible to prospective employers during background checks.  

  • More housing opportunities. Many landlords conduct background checks and reject tenants with a criminal past. As a result, expungement can result in more and potentially better housing opportunities.  

  • Better education and professional license opportunities. A criminal record can also make it more challenging (or even impossible) to enroll in certain courses or programs or obtain a professional license.  

  • No more stigma. One of the worst things about having a criminal record is the negative attitudes other people hold toward individuals with a criminal past. Expunging criminal records can help you get rid of that stigma.  

  • Lower insurance premiums. Certain criminal charges, including DUI, can result in an increase in your insurance premiums. Getting an expungement could help lower those insurance premiums.   

The benefits of an expungement do not end there. Everyone’s situation is unique, which is why you may not fully realize the positive impact an expungement has on your life until you get your records expunged.  

What Is the Process of Obtaining an Expungement?

The process of obtaining an expungement begins with filing a petition in the circuit court for the jurisdiction where the arrest and/or charges occurred. You must ensure that you meet the above-mentioned requirements to obtain an expungement in Virginia. If you don’t, your petition will be denied.  

While you can try to get an expungement without an attorney, you increase the risk that your petition will be denied in court. An expungement lawyer can provide you with the necessary forms when filing a petition, help you fill out the forms so that no mistakes are made, prepare for and handle objections from the judge, and go to court and answer questions from the judge on your behalf, among many other things.  

Expungement Attorney in Abingdon and Tazewell, Virginia 

Having a criminal record can have far-reaching consequences throughout every area of your life. You should not let the mistakes of your past dictate your future. At the Letsen Law Firm, we understand that all people are capable of making mistakes. That is why our expungement attorney in Abingdon and Tazewell, Virginia, helps people put their past behind them and move forward with their lives by getting their records expunged. Reach out today for a consultation.