Criminal Record Expungement: Sealing Your Records

How can a person in Columbus “expunge” their record of a criminal conviction?  And what does expunging a criminal record in Ohio actually mean?  Under Ohio law, the word “expungement” is no longer used; rather, what was formerly referred to as “expungement” is now called “sealing a criminal record.”  Ohio Revised Code Sections 2953.31 through 2953.62 govern a person’s eligibility to have their record sealed, and outline the process you need to go through to seal your criminal record.

Once a criminal record is “sealed,” all the electronic and paper records about your sealed charge and conviction are moved to a separate, secure location where they cannot be seen by nearly all people.  There are limited exceptions, such as for police and law enforcement officers when investigating future crimes, or for judges who can consider them in sentencing for future crimes.  Some state licensing boards can also access sealed records when screening persons for licensing applications, suspensions, or revocations.  Finally, a limited number of employers, such as law enforcement agencies, can have access to sealed records when considering an applicant for employment.

Sealing a criminal record, even one of an arrest, can make all the difference in the world when applying for an educational program, a job, obtaining credit from a financial institution, or further pursuing your career.  After getting a record of a criminal conviction sealed, you can honestly answer questions on most applications as though that sealed conviction does not exist.  In addition, subject to the exceptions listed above, the record will not show up on a background check run by your prospective employer.

FIND HELP FROM A COLUMBUS EXPUNGEMENT ATTORNEY TO SEAL YOUR CRIMINAL RECORD

Lawyers from our Columbus law firm have extensive experience in sealing criminal charges and convictions in Columbus and central Ohio.  Call us at 614.454.5010 for a free initial consultation.