Unsealing your criminal record in Washington, D.C.

Person filling out criminal background check

In the limited circumstances in which this is necessary, DC Code §16-806 provides for the unsealing of a criminal record that has previously been expunged/sealed.

Bureaucratic delays plague motions to seal

criminal record binders

In a cynical attempt to elicit the court’s sympathy, the government blames Covid-19 for its delays in responding to motions to seal criminal records. Bureaucratic incompetence is the true culprit.

Are criminal records ever truly expunged?

Graffiti used to demonstrate expungements from a D.C. criminal defense attorney

Use of the phrase “expungement of a criminal record” suggests that the record in question is truly erased/obliterated such that it no longer exists. Whether this actually happens – both practically-speaking and from a legal standpoint – is a bit more complicated.

How does the Covid-19 pandemic affect a defendant’s speedy trial rights in D.C.?

Jefferson Memorial

Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the time between March 18 and November 9, 2020 will be “tolled.” In other words, it will not count when calculating whether a defendant’s speedy trial rights have been violated.

Expunging marijuana arrest/conviction in D.C.

Marijuana conviction in DC - graffiti on wall

Offenses that have been decriminalized (for example, the possession of a small amount of marijuana) present one of the most promising options for sealing or expunging a criminal record in Washington, D.C.

Dealing with the crazies in C10

Graffiti used to demonstrate expungements from a D.C. criminal defense attorney

With almost 100 people making their way through arraignment court every day, it is inevitable that there will be a melt-down or two. After all, we are dealing with people who are finishing what for many of them will be the worst day of their lives.

Expunge your criminal record in D.C.: actual innocence

Expunge records on grounds of innocence

The fastest and most effective way to remove an arrest from your criminal record is to file a motion alleging actual innocence under D.C. Code §16-802.

Open season on police officers?

D.C. criminal defense attorney

According to a plain reading of D.C.’s new resisting arrest statute, you can lawfully resist your own Terry stop.

Will expunged record show up in an FBI background check?

D.C. criminal defense lawyer

In most cases, the FBI will – as a courtesy – comply with a state court’s order to remove a criminal record from the National Crime Information Center (NCIC).

Can I expunge a criminal record for simple assault?

A criminal record for simple assault in D.C. can be sealed either immediately on the grounds of actual innocence or after two years in the interests of justice.  A conviction for simple assault can be sealed after eight years…. Read More