Criminal Record Sealing / Expugement
If you have been acquitted of a crime in the past, or the charges against you were dismissed, and you want to keep the charges private, or are applying for a new job or educational opportunity, then you may want to have your criminal record sealed. If you were convicted of a criminal offense, you may want to obtain a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities or a Certificate of Good Conduct.
Sealing your criminal record in New York would prevent a majority of the public from being able to view your record. Although it is possible for someone to complete the record sealing process on their own, it can be confusing and difficult, and may be easier for an experienced criminal defense attorney to complete on your behalf.
Queens Criminal Record Sealing Lawyer
Contact the Law Office if you have a criminal record you want to seal in Kings County, New York County, Bronx County or Queens County. Rochelle S. Berliner is knowledgeable and experienced in the criminal record sealing process in New York.
Call the Law Office at for a consultation to find out if you are eligible to seal your criminal record.
Criminal Records Information Center
- Sealing your Adult Criminal Record
- Certificate of Relief from Disabilities in New York
- Certificate of Good Conduct
- Youthful Offender Sealing of Records
- Resources for Sealing Criminal Records
New York does not allow expungement (or expunction) of adult criminal records that resulted in a conviction. A criminal record is considered an adult record if the offender was 16 years or older when the offense occurred. An exception to this is if the person convicted was between the ages of 16 and 18 and was adjudicated a “Youthful Offender” when sentenced. However, an adult arrest that resulted in a dismissal or an acquittal may be eligible for sealing, in addition to other limited circumstances.
An expunged criminal record has basically been eliminated from all public access, as if the record was destroyed. Sealed criminal records are sealed from public view, but governmental agencies will still be able to access the record.
A sealed record in New York can only be released to the public for limited purposes, for example if the offender applies for a pistol permit or for employment in certain governmental capacities, such as a police officer or other positions in state government departments. The record may also be released to a parole or probation officer if the offender is under supervision.
Under Criminal Procedure Law § 160.58, an offender who has been convicted of certain offenses associated with controlled substances or other specified offenses, and has completed a judicial diversion program, may be eligible to have his/her record sealed. The offender may file a motion to have the record sealed, or the court may do so on its own will.
Further, someone may obtain a copy of his/her criminal record and challenge the completeness or accuracy of the record if it is not correct and is thereby preventing him/her from applying for certain jobs or educational opportunities.
According to Article 23 of the New York State Correction Law, someone with a criminal record of any number of misdemeanors or not more than one felony is eligible to apply for a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities. The most common reason people seek this certificate is to remove some or all legal limitations imposed on potential jobs, employment opportunities, or professional licenses as a result of the conviction. This certificate can also restore the right to serve on a jury and can remove the statutory bar to public housing. However, the Certificate of Relief from Disabilities will not permit someone who has a conviction to run for public office.
Persons may apply for a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities at the court in which they were convicted or to the Department of Corrections Certificate Review Unit in Albany, depending on factors such as whether state prison time was served or whether the conviction was in a jurisdiction other than New York.
Our firm has successfully obtained these certificates for many of our clients and we can help you navigate through the process.
A person who has been convicted of more than one felony in New York or is seeking the removal of a disability pertaining to a specific public office may be eligible for a Certificate of Good Conduct. This certificate also can remove some or all legal limitations a convicted offender faces when applying for a job and certain occupational licenses. In rare cases, a Certificate of Good Conduct can also remove the disability to possess a firearm or apply for a firearms license.
In order to apply for a Certificate of Good Conduct, a minimum period of time must have passed from the date your sentence ended or were released from parole. The period of time depends on whether the conviction is a misdemeanor or felony. Additionally, your sentence must be complete, or you must be released from parole.
According to Criminal Procedure Law § 720.15, an instrument charging a youth with a criminal offense is considered a sealed record with respect to the public, unless they have previously been convicted of a crime and adjudicated as a youthful offender. Further, the criminal record of a youth who has been adjudicated as a youthful offender is confidential and not available to the public.
For an eligible youth’s first misdemeanor conviction, youthful offender status is mandatory. However, it is within the court’s discretion to grant youthful offender status for a first felony conviction,. A youth can have only one youthful offender misdemeanor adjudication to be granted youthful offender status on a subsequent felony.
A youth in New York is considered a person who was at least the age of 16 and less than19 when the crime was committed.
New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services – The DCJS strives to make New York a safer place by enhancing public safety and improving criminal justice. This state governmental agency maintains criminal history checks, criminal history records and fingerprinting.
New York State Division of Parole – This governmental branch promotes the safety of the public by preparing convicted offenders for release and supervising those released on parole. This site also has more information on Certificates of Good Conduct and Certificates of Relief from Disabilities.
Law Office | Queens Criminal Record Sealing Attorney
If you have a criminal record in any of the five boroughs of New York and Long Island, and wish to have it sealed, it is in your best interest to seek the help of an experienced Queens criminal defense attorney. Law Office represents clients throughout all areas of New York, including Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx and Manhattan.
Rochelle S. Berliner can review your case and determine you eligbility during a free, confidential consultation as soon as you call or submit an online form right now.
- Criminal Record Sealing