In North Carolina, you can expunge certain crimes from your criminal record. An expungement essentially gives you a fresh start – it basically erases the crime so the general public can’t tell it ever happened. Under NC expungement law, you may be eligible for criminal record clearing if you:
- Were arrested but never charged
- Went to court and were found not guilty
- Had your identity stolen and were falsely accused of a crime
- Went to court and had your case dismissed
- Were found guilty of certain misdemeanors
- Were found guilty of certain nonviolent Class H or Class I felonies
Generally, it’s a good idea to talk to a North Carolina expungement attorney who understands the law and how it applies in your case – that way, you can be sure whether you qualify for expungement and you have someone with experience by your side every step of the way.
You can only expunge crimes that are considered non-violent – if you have a violent crime you’d like to remove from your record, you’ll probably want to talk to an attorney about your options.
List of Crimes You Can Expunge in North Carolina
North Carolina’s new expunction law is there for low-level, nonviolent felonies and misdemeanors. That covers a lot of ground, so some examples of crimes that you may be able to expunge include:
Concealing goods in a store
Credit card fraud
Damage to property
Defrauding drug or alcohol screening tests
Gang offenses, but only in limited circumstances
Interfering with emergency communication
Misuse of confidential information
Obtaining property through false pretenses
Possession of alcohol
Possession of drug paraphernalia
Possession of marijuana
Possession of some controlled substances
Possession of stolen goods
Presenting a worthless check
Prostitution, but only in limited circumstances
|Purchasing unlawful amounts of alcoholic beverages|
Small sales of controlled substances
Swearing falsely to official reports
Unauthorized disclosure of information
Unlawfully accessing computers
Use of a laser device toward an aircraft
You can get a more complete list of misdemeanors that could qualify for expungement here.
Remember, though – even if the crime on your record is eligible for expungement, you most likely still have to meet other criteria (such as not having prior expungements or not having other convictions).
List of Crimes You Cannot Expunge in North Carolina
The law says you can’t expunge:
- Class A through Class G felonies
- Crimes that involve contaminating food or drinks in a way that makes someone mentally incapacitated or helpless
- Felonies that include assault as an essential element of the offense
- Felonies that require you to register as an offender (such as a sex offender)
- Offenses in which you used a commercial vehicle while committing the crime
- Offenses that involve methamphetamines or heroin
- Offenses that involve the intent to sell or deliver cocaine
- Some sex-related offenses
- Stalking offenses
Even if you think you’re not eligible for expungement, it’s a good idea to talk to an attorney to get case-specific advice for your own situation. When you talk to a lawyer during a free expungement consultation, you’ll be able to find out whether you’re eligible for expunction and ask questions so you understand exactly what you’re up against.
Do You Need to Talk to a Lawyer About Expungement?
North Carolina expungement can be a little bit complicated – and it can be tough to understand whether you qualify, because each crime has its own requirements. For example, if you want to expunge prostitution charges, the offense either had to arise from you being a victim of human trafficking or sexual servitude or you must have no other convictions for a prostitution offense and it must have been at least 3 years from the date you were convicted or you completed your sentence.
That’s just one example. In other cases, you must have no other convictions on your record at all, or you must wait a different period of time before you can petition for an expungement.
If you need to talk to a lawyer about expungement, we’re here to help. Call us at 704-470-2440 right now for a free consultation. We’ll be happy to answer your questions and help determine whether you’re eligible to get the fresh start you deserve.