This page was designed to help our clients better understand our Arizona Setting Aside Felony service. You will find answers to the questions we are most frequently asked. If your question is related to eligibility requirements please take the free online eligibility test.
That depends on the type of background check that is used. If the employer does a standard commercial background check (which typically only looks for actual convictions), chances are the case will not appear. If the employer requires you to submit fingerprints and provide a copy of your Arizona Department of Public Safety report, it will show that there was a case, but it was set aside and there is no conviction or finding of guilt.
The Arizona Supreme Court's website lists court cases and the outcome of the case. In some instances the court has been leaving the guilty plea present on the website, but in the case history will state that it was set aside.
The case can still be used for sentencing purposes in later criminal cases.
You do not have to disclose the case and can answer with confidence to any inquiry or to an application for employment that you have not been convicted of a crime.
You can truthfully say you were not convicted to any question for employment. Even though the case may be viewed on extensive background checks, it will appear as a dismissed case and not a conviction. This will certainly increase your chances.
Section 19 of the FDIA (Federal Deposit Insurance Act) allows banks and other financial institutions to bar prospective and current employees who have had “Breach of Trust” or "Dishonesty" convictions from jobs that they are otherwise qualified for even if they had the conviction expunged.
"Dishonesty" means directly or indirectly to cheat or defraud; to cheat or defraud for monetary gain or its equivalent; or wrongfully to take property belonging to another in violation of any criminal statute. Dishonesty includes acts involving want of integrity, lack of probity, or a disposition to distort, cheat, or act deceitfully or fraudulently, and may include crimes which federal, state or local laws define as dishonest. "Breach of trust" means a wrongful act, use, misappropriation or omission with respect to any property or fund which has been committed to a person in a fiduciary or official capacity, or the misuse of one's official or fiduciary position to engage in a wrongful act, use, misappropriation or omission.
Whether a crime involves dishonesty or breach of trust will be determined from the statutory elements of the crime itself. All convictions for offenses concerning the illegal manufacture, sale, distribution of or trafficking in controlled substances are included. Other offenses can include but is not limited to the following: petty theft, grand theft, insufficient checks, burglary, possession of drugs for distribution or sales, embezzlement, fraud, fraud to obtain aid or benefits and money laundering.
If you believe you have a “breach of trust” or "dishonesty" conviction and were denied a position or were terminated from a financial institution because of that offense, there still is another way to obtain that job with a waiver from the FDIC. It is important to speak with an attorney about your specific circumstances to see if you would qualify for such a waiver from the FDIC.
You have an attorney to (1) make sure it is done right the first time so it does not get rejected or cost you months of delay (2) handle objections from the district attorney (3) send an attorney to court to argue the case if need be and (4) write letters to potential employers letting them know that the case has been reopened and will soon have the conviction off of your record
Typically, the case takes about three to four months.
We base our estimates of how long a case will take on how long the average is for that service in that state. However, some cases can take less or more time depending on the facts of the case, whether the DA is agreeing or objecting, the age of the case, etc. We work on your case as fast as we can and assist the court and DA in anything they need to get your case heard.
The courts work on a first-come, first-served basis. Therefore, the sooner you sign up, the sooner it is heard and decided. If it helps, we would be glad to write your employer or potential employer a letter letting them know we have reopened the case and are in the process of having it dismissed.
We have an online tracking system that is just for your case(s). You will have a user name and password for the account and it will have the information specific to the case. Whenever anything happens in your case we post it in your online account so that you can view the status of the case and the progress that is made. If there is no post on your online account then that means that there is no update in the case. For example, once we update your online account to reflect that we have filed the motion with the court we will update the notes when we hear a response from the court or District Attorney. Depending on the court, it can take several weeks to months to hear from the court or District Attorney whether there is an objection, hearing, or anything else. If something is taking longer than usual for the court we will call to obtain status of the case and update your online notes. In addition to posting the status updates in your online account, we will post your case information in the case information so you are aware of the case and future hearings.
Moreover, we post your contract and payment plan information on the online account for you so that you can view all the information and print it.
No, we go for you. If the court requests your presence and you are unable to make it then we will request for your presence to be excused.
Once you sign up we have you fill out a questionnaire on your personal online account. The questionnaire asks questions that influence the outcome of the case and allows us to argue the important information to the judge so he knows why you are deserving to have your record cleared. Although some of the questions seem simple, the more information and detail that you provide in your answers the better we will be able to argue the case in your favor.
No, it does not matter. We can set aside your conviction regardless of what you pled.
If we are unable to succeed on your case, we have a money back guarantee for certain services. Please view the pricing section for details regarding the money back guarantee.
We can create a payment plan that meets your needs. Please view the pricing section for details regarding the payment plans.
We would be glad to work with you to get a copy of your record and to review what can be done. We charge a researching fee and we apply that to the total cost of any service that you hire us to perform.
Setting asides must be filed and completed per case. Therefore, we charge per case. It does not matter how many counts are in each case. However, if you sign up for multiple cases then we can discount the additional cases.
Yes. Offenses involving the infliction of serious physical injury, involving the use or exhibition of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument, that require registration as a sex offender, there was a finding of sexual motivation, where the victim was under 15 years old, or that are in Title 28, Chapter 3 are not eligible.
-Failure to Comply with Police Officer (28-622) -Unlawful Flight from a Pursuing Law Enforcement Vehicle (28-662.01) -Display of Unauthorized Signs, Signals, or Markings (28-648) -Interference with Official Traffic Control Device or Railroad Sign Signal (28-649) -Possession of Traffic Preemption Emitter (28-649) -Use of Private Property to Avoid Traffic Control Device (28-651) -Failure to Stop at Scene of Accident (28-661 & 28-662) -Failure to Give Information and Assistance During Accident (28-663) -Duty on Striking Unattended Vehicle (28-664) -Striking Fixtures on a Highway (28-665) -Causing Serious Physical Injury or Death via Moving Violation (28-672) -Causing Death by Use of a Vehicle (28-675) -Causing Serious Physical Injury by Use of a Vehicle (28-676) -Aggressive Driving (28-695) -Speeding violations (28-701 to 28-710) -Violations pertaining to driving on the right side of a roadway, overtaking and passing a vehicle (28-721 to 28-737) -Violations pertaining to turning, starting, and signaling when stopping or turning (28-751 to 28-756) -Violations pertaining to right-of-way (28-771 to 28-776) -Violations pertaining to pedestrian rights and duties (28-791 to 28-797) -Violations pertaining to operation of bicycles (28-811 to 28-818) -Driving Vehicle Through, Around, or Under a Crossing Gate that is Closed (28-851) -Failure to Stop at Railroad Grade Crossing When Required (28-853) -Moving Heavy Equipment Across a Railroad Track or Railroad Grade Crossing (28-854) -Failure to Stop at Stop Sign (28-855) -Emerging from Alley, Driveway, or Building (28-856) -Overtaking & Passing a School Bus (28-857) -Stopping, Standing, or Parking Outside a Business or Residence (28-871) -Stopping, Standing, or Parking on Sidewalks and Other Prohibited Areas (28-873) -Stopping, Standing, or Parking in Space Designate for Electric Vehicles (28-876) -Violations Pertaining to Parking for Persons with Disabilities (28-881 to 28-886) -Unlawful Backing of Vehicle (28-891) -Obstruction of Driver’s View (28-893) -Coasting (28-895) -Swaying a Trailer or Semi-Trailer (28-896) -Crossing a Fire Hose (28-897) -Littering on Roadway (28-898) -Driving a Motor Vehicle in Way that Deprives a Motorcycle of the Full Use of a Lane (28-903) -Driving on Sidewalk (28-904) -Unsafely Opening a Vehicle Door (28-905) -Mechanically Raising or Lowering Height of Vehicle While Driving (28-906) -Child Passenger Restraint System (28-907) -Operating an Electric Personal Assistive Mobility Device by Person Under 16 (28-911) -Violations pertaining to motor vehicle equipment (28-921 to 28-966) -Inspection of Vehicles (28-983) -Violations pertaining to vehicle size, weight, and load (28-1091 to 28-1111) -Operating, Moving, or Leaving Standing on a Highway a Vehicle Carrying or Transporting Cargo in Violation of an Envelope Permit (28-1151) -Violations pertaining to off-highway vehicles (28-1171 to 28-1181)
However, reckless driving and DUI offenses are eligible.
You are eligible to have your felony reduced to a misdemeanor if your conviction was an undesignated offense. To find out if your conviction was undesignated, you can call the court where you were convicted and they will tell you.
If it is denied, it is usually because of (1) an inaccuracy in the court file, (2) an inaccuracy in the application, (3) the court does not believe it will be in the interest of society, (4) violating probation and (5) not paying fines.
If the case is denied, we evaluate the reason for the denial and determine the best way to proceed. If we do not believe that refiling would be successful or we recommend the person wait longer to refile, then there is a money back guarantee for certain services.
Convictions that require registration are not eligible to be set aside. Therefore, setting aside the judgment does not affect registration.
You will receive a court order setting aside your conviction. Public criminal record databases will be updated to reflect that your conviction was set aside and your case was closed.
The court will send the granted order to the Arizona Department of Public Safety. The Arizona Department of Public Safety will then update their records and the criminal record databases will be updated to reflect that your conviction was set aside and your case was closed.
The court updates the court records within 48 hours and the Arizona Department of Public Safety has up to 30 days to update their records. However, the Department of Public Safety typically updates their records before the 30 days expire.
No. In order to have a case sealed, you can’t be convicted of the charge and you must prove the arrest was wrongful. Please see section on record sealing.
Setting aside does not affect your DMV records. However, after a certain number of years the DMV records fall off and disappear, unlike your criminal history which never changes unless you have the conviction set aside.
If you have been convicted of minor offenses (including assault, dangerous driving, DUI, theft, shoplifting, unauthorized possession of firearms, possession of illegal substances, etc.) or indictable criminal offenses (including assault with a deadly weapon, manslaughter, etc.) you may be prohibited from entrance and further action is required to find out whether you will be allowed entrance. The Canadian government has entered into an information sharing agreement with the United States; so the Canadian government will have whatever information the United States has on record. Therefore, the first thing you should do is clear your criminal record to the fullest extent possible before submitting to a background check. The benefit of this will show the Canadian government that the matter was resolved and no longer considered a conviction and improve the odds of not being denied entry to Canada or being stuck at the border for lengthy interrogation.
The Border Patrol has discretion in granting or denying Sentri passes. So the only thing we can say for sure is that it would help; so it would be wise to invest in record clearing before applying for a pass. A modest investment in expungement could be the difference between having your request accepted or denied. It will show that you have resolved all matters with the court.
Upon completion of your sentence for your first felony, your civil rights are automatically restored. If it is not your first felony, then you have to apply to have your civil rights restored. If the sentence included probation then you can apply to have your rights restored immediately after the probation is terminated. If the sentence included imprisonment in the state prison then you must wait two years after the date of absolute discharge. Civil rights restoration is included in the setting aside service.
Criminal violations may have severe consequences for immigrants, even if the crime is expunged/vacated/sealed. Even minor offenses such as petty theft can make someone deportable or inadmissible, while more serious offenses such as burglary may not have the same consequences. Since each case is unique, it is important to get a case-by-case analysis tailored to your specific facts. To find out if your criminal conviction will impact your immigration case it is imperative you contact a qualified immigration attorney. Our in-house immigration attorney is available to answer questions at 714-617-8395.
You can only expunge certain cases. Typically, you have to show that the conviction was wrongful or unconstitutional. Additionally, a person can apply for a pardon through the President. We do not handle federal cases.
If you were convicted of a federal felony and would like to restore your right to own a firearm then please see our federal gun right restoration section.
No. The two most common reasons for a person to lose their right to own or possess a firearm in Arizona are (1) being convicted of a felony or (2) being convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence.
(1) If you were convicted of a felony, setting aside will not restore your right to own a firearm. To determine eligibility for restoration of the right to own a firearm, please see section on restoring gun rights.
(2) There is also a lifetime prohibition from the United States government (Lautenberg Amendment to the Violence Against Women Act), which prohibits firearm ownership of those convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence as defined by the federal law. The federal definition is narrower than Arizona's definition, so your domestic violence conviction in Arizona might not trigger the federal law. Setting aside in Arizona does not lift the federal prohibition.
Call us 602-490-0725 or Toll Free 877-573-7273
Please take the free online eligibility test before calling.
Law Firm of Higbee & Associates
2942 N 24th Street, Suite 114-315
Phoenix, AZ 85016
*By Appointment Only