EXPUNGEMENTS AND REDUCTIONS
An “expungement” is a petition we can bring to the Napa Court after probation is concluded to allow you to withdraw your former plea of guilty or no contest to a misdemeanor or felony and replace it with a not guilty plea!
If the offense of which you were convicted was a “wobbler” (a crime that can be either a felony or misdemeanor), we will also ask the Court to reduce the felony charge to a misdemeanor before withdrawing your plea.
Expungements are available to people who were convicted of misdemeanors or felonies if:
You were granted and successfully completed probation; or
The Court grants us an early termination of probation; or
You were denied probation more than a year ago (as long as there was no prison sentence); or
You served time in prison for a crime that is now a P.C. 1170(h) “local prison” crime.
An expungement can be very useful for your future! The most direct benefit is that an expunged conviction does not need to be disclosed to potential employers! It can also be beneficial at immigration deportation hearings, and with state licensing applications.
Unfortunately, there are some classifications of crimes that won’t qualify – mostly sex crimes. Also, there are some limits on the benefits of an expungement. For example:
Expungement doesn’t restore gun rights, unless a misdemeanor reduction is granted aforehand for some crimes;
Expungement won’t eliminate a DUI from acting as a prior offense, nor save you from driver’s license consequences flowing from a conviction;
Expungement doesn’t eliminate the need to register as a sex offender;
Expungement won’t eliminate a “strike” prior from being alleged.
Expungement is a reward for your good citizenship following a conviction.
You need to collect it!
We are happy to help.