How To Get Your Record Expunged In PA (Petition And Process)

How To Get Your Record Expunged In PA (Petition And Process)

In the state of Pennsylvania, record expungement is offered as a way to remove a criminal record from your history that did NOT result in a conviction OR to expunge a misdemeanor of felony conviction that has been Pardoned by the Governor

What is an Expungement?

An expungement is a Court Order that actually clears your criminal history from the PA State Police Criminal Repository. All other agencies that get that information then update their records.  Pardons are required from the Governor before trying to expunge a misdemeanor or felony conviction.

Other expungements include when you’ve committed a minor, summary offense or when the offense was committed as a juvenile. In this post, we share how to get your record expunged in PA.

Where to go to get your record expunged

Expungement Petitions are filed in the County where the conduct occurred. Expungements are authorized by the statute 18 PACSA 9122 (and subsections). Any petition filed on unqualified charges will be denied.  Any expungement requested for a misdemeanor or felony conviction that has not been pardoned will be denied (unless the Petitioner is 70 years old).

Expungements can only be filed in specific instances under Pennsylvania Law:

  • A summary offense after five years of law-abiding behavior
    • The partial list of offenses are:
      • Disorderly Conduct (s) (5103)
      • Harassment (s) (2709)
      • Underage Consumption (s) (6308)
      • Retail Theft (s) (3929)
      • Other Summaries
      • NOT Traffic Offenses (the Motor Vehicle Code does not contain an expungement provision).
  • An Underage Consumption (S) is expungable when the person reaches 21 years of age.
  • Any docket where ALL charges have been withdrawn, nol prossed or dismissed
  • Any docket resolved successfully with ARD, or Section 17 or Section 586
    • ARD is probation without a conviction
    • Section 17 was used for drug misdemeanors and is not a conviction
    • 586 dispositions mean the victim got paid back in full and is not a conviction
  • Any docket that has NO disposition after 18 months
  • Any convictions that have been pardoned by the Governor
  • Felony and Misdemeanor convictions IF the Petitioner is over 70 years of age and has not been under supervision for ten years.

>>> Learn more on how to get a felony record cleared in PA

How Does the Expungement Process Work in Pennsylvania?

To get started with an expungement, you will need a copy of your court or docket records. An experienced expungement attorney can help you through the expungement process.  You will also need to give a copy to the district attorney who will be given time to agree or oppose your petition.

How to Clear Your Criminal Record with the Expungement Process in PA:

  1. An expungement is prepared and filed in the County where the charge occurred.
  2. Every County has a different filing fee and processes.
  3. When a petition for expungement is filed in the County of Record, the District Attorney is allowed 30 days to consent to or oppose the Petition or ask for a hearing.
  4. Meanwhile the Court Administrator may schedule an Expungement hearing which could require you to appear in Court.
  5. When the Judge signs the Expungement Order, all records are ordered destroyed.
  6. The Pennsylvania State Police will update their database, and the information will be deleted from the UJS portal after a few months.

If your record is sealed or expunged, it will no longer be visible to the general public, including potential employers. Find out if your criminal record is eligible for expungement or sealing.      

>>> Read how pardons for non-violent marijuana-related convictions have been expedited in PA

>>> Read about Pennsylvania’s Clean Slate Law

Erase My Record

Cleaning up criminal offense history record information can be challenging, especially if you have a misdemeanor conviction or felony conviction. If you’re not sure of the first step to take for an expungement request in Pennsylvania, we can help. Contact Record Eraser to tell your story to a qualified expungement attorney (this is not the same as a criminal defense attorney).

When you partner with our PA Expungement lawyers, you get:

  • 30+ years of legal experience
  • Specialized relationships with key legal partners
  • Our process to research, advise and file PA Expungement petitions, and Pardon Applications.

But most importantly, you get fast PA record expungement filings that end in better results.

Erase My Record

Pennsylvania Record Expungement FAQ

How Long Do You Have to Wait to Get Your Record Expunged in PA?

If your charge is eligible, Pennsylvania expungement petitions can be prepared and filed within 30 days. The Court and the District Attorney may then take 30 days to review it, and once the Court signs the order, the State Police will clear the record in a few months.

Click here to contact an expert expungement attorney in PA today

Can Felony and Misdemeanor Convictions Be Expunged in PA?

The only way a felony or misdemeanor conviction can be expunged from your record is by receiving a pardon from the Governor. Without a pardon the court can’t clear such convictions unless you’re more than 70 years old and can meet other conditions.

Learn more about felony and misdemeanor conviction expungements

Does Your Criminal History Clear After 7 Years?

No. Pennsylvania provides “automatic sealing” as part of the Clean Slate Law. However, it doesn’t require you to do anything when it comes to particular criminal records. In general, after a certain period, the state’s law will allegedly automatically clear the following:

● Summary offenses after five years

● Convictions for second and third-degree misdemeanors after ten years without any other convictions

● Non-convictions

The reason we say ‘allegedly’ is because the algorithm does not always work, or only partially clears a record. Also, Clean Slate leaves the record with the State Police where it can still be used against you. A Pardon is required to completely remove this remnant.

Click here to get in touch with a pardon attorney today

What is the Clean Slate Law?

On June 28, 2018, Pennsylvania Governor Wolf signed the “Clean Slate” Bill. This bill allows non-violent cases to be automatically sealed after a specific time has passed. Moreover, the eligibility requirement to get a clean slate is that there are no felony convictions and other limiting exclusions.

Learn more about what non-violent crimes are eligible for clearing under the “Clean Slate Law”

In what instances can an expungement for a crime be filed? 

The following offenses can be expunged: 

  • A summary offense (such as disorderly conduct, underage consumption or retail theft) after 5 years of law-abiding behavior
  • Any docket where all charges have been withdrawn, nol prossed, dismissed
  • Any docket resolved successfully with ARD or Section 17 or Section 586
  • Any docket that has no disposition after 18 months 
  • Any convictions that have been pardoned by the Governor
  • Felony and Misdemeanor convictions can be expunged if the Petitioner is over 70 years old and has not been under supervision for 10 years.

Click here to learn more about getting a felony record or misdemeanor cleared in PA.

What if my convictions don’t qualify for an expungement?

For a conviction to eligible for an expungement, you must first get a pardon. 

Learn more about how to get a pardon in Pennsylvania.

Can I get my record expunged for free in PA?

You may be eligible for free legal assistance while filing for an expungement petition based on your income level. Regardless, it is highly recommended that you seek legal help. A qualified and experienced expungement attorney from Record Eraser will expedite the process and get you the second chance you deserve.


You Deserve a Second Chance

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