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Pennsylvania Expungement FAQsFrequently Asked Questions


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Topic: Pennsylvania Expungement FAQs
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Concerned Person
22nd August 2015 5:51am
Last February 2014 I was pulled over and received a DUI. I was also in possession of controlled substances is what was written in the paper when I was released from the Roundhouse. This was my first time in trouble with the law and have no prior record. I completed the ARD Program but while at court nothing had been mentioned about the possession. Was it dropped along with the DUI because I completed the ARD Program? I received a letter in the mail and am eligible for an expungement of my DUI, but again nothing mentioned about possession. I'm eager to begin a career in social work and am worried this one aweful day is going to make life and pursuing my dream much more difficult and possibly take a year or more, which worries me. Will the possession charge go away because I completed the ARD program or is that something that I will have the handle separately?? Any advice or knowledge on this situation would be appreciated.

Admin:
If you did not plead guilty separately to the possession charge it most likely was either included in the ARD sentence or dropped entirely.  It is possible you plead guilty to that separate charge, but you most likely would recall doing so.  You can pull up your case dockets or have an attorney do so for you to determine the exact was that charge was handled and if both charges are eligible to be expunged.  Assuming it was either dismissed or part of the ARD, you will be able to expunge them both together.  Please take our test online to sign up or contact us to get started on researching and completing your PA expungement.
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John B.
9th August 2015 5:04am
I was arrested 20 years ago and had 3 criminal charges against me. 2 of which were criminal trespassing and criminal conspiracy but charges were dropped. I was employed as a teacher (my first year teaching) then and my school district continued my employment after charges were dropped. Since then folks have retired, administration has changed several times. No one is there that even remembers the shame I went through. Teachers need to have their clearances updated. I did an FBI finger print report recently and the arrest showed up. I have not submitted it yet. Can this be expunged and how long does it take? All clearances are due by Decembers end. Can I even do another FBI clearance should the record be expunged? I feel like I'm reliving the nightmare of 20 years ago!
Admin:
The length of time the case takes to be expunged by the court and then have the expungement processed by the FBI varies depending on many factors.  It is possible to be done by the end of the year, but you would really need to get the processed started ASAP.  The time frame depends on how busy the court is at the time of filing, whether the DA consents to the request or opposes (and how long they take to respond).  The FBI can take 30-60 days to update their records following the judge granting the exxpungement and the order being distributed. Depending on your employer requirements, you should be able to request a new FBI report. Your case does sound like it is eligible to be expunged as the charges were dropped.  Please contact us if you would like us to get started on your case.  Thank you.
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Jennifer B.
27th June 2015 9:10pm
I have a summary retail theft record that my lawyer said it was expunged but it obviously wasn't. When employers do a police background check its doesn't come up until they do fingerprints for the FBI database why is that? This incident happened 4 years ago does it typically take that long? Should I get another lawyer? I feel like he is hiding something from me.
Admin:
Criminal records can often appear in some background checks but not others depending on what the potential employer requests.  Summary offenses are minor offenses and often they are not reported to an employer, but as you have witnessed that does not mean the case has been fully expunged and records are still available (such as through the FBI).  I am sorry for the trouble you are having with your current attorney.  You indicated the incident occurred 4 years ago.  In PA, you must wait five years before expunging a summary offense if you were found guilty of the offense.  As long as you have remained arrest and conviction free since that conviction, you would be eligible five years from the date of conviction.  Please contact us if you are interested in getting signed up for a summary offense expungement.
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Nicole A.
16th June 2015 12:57pm
I successfully completed the ARD program after a DUI and had the case was expunged. Am I eligible for entry to Canada?
Admin:
You should be able to enter Canada. It is possible that they could still have a record of the case.  This could occur if it had ever been entered into their database and they somehow have not received notice of the expungement. But after the expungement, the case should have been removed from the FBI records which would hopefully update with Canadien officials as well. To be safe, I'd suggest having a copy of the expungement order with you when you attempt to cross the border just in case it does pop up in their system.  Showing them the case has been dismissed and expunged should help clear up any issues that arise.
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Jay
6th June 2015 9:53am
I have completed ARD and paid my fine. I am now in the process of expungement. My question is once my expungement is finalized and my records are sealed what is the likelihood that i will be hired for a driving job such as trucking or maybe UBER. I am asking this because on this site it is stated that it remains on your MVR for ten years.
Admin:
We cannot say what the likelihood of being hired for any specific job would be.  A DUI that resulted in ARD will remain on your driving record in PA for 10 years and unfortunately an expungement of the court records does not affect the driving records.  If a company pulls your driving record, they will continue to see the existence of that past case. It will then be up to their discretion whether to hire an applicant or not.
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AJ
22nd April 2015 6:20pm
I had a summary offense for shoplifting when I was 17. It cleared from my state criminal record upon turning 18. Guess how surprised I was when it unexpectedly showed up on my FBI clearance for teaching?! Now we are mandated to go through that process again, and I'm wondering if expungement would take care of the FBI record? What I have been reading is that I should petition the court in which the charges originated, but then...my state record is clear.
Admin:
Yes, if granted, an expungement is Pennsylvania that will generally take care of the FBI record as well.  The PA State Police will forward on the expungement order to the FBI, who routinely comply with the expungement orders. I will note that the FBI is not required to comply with a state court\'s expungement order, but they typically do, unless there were extremely rare circumstances involved, such as the case involved a threat to national security, which clearly your case falls nowhere near that type/level of offense.
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Faith
31st March 2015 3:18pm
I was told that I was eligible for a full expungment but when I went to file was told that I can't get it because I have two summary offenses within a year of each other. So can I petition the court for a partial and and a full and also what's a difference of summary expungment.
Admin:
If five years have passed since your most recent summary offense conviction, meaning you are free from conviction for the past five years, you should be able to expunge both cases.  We have had success for our clients in that situation, where the waiting period is the past five years not the five years immediately folliowing the conviction.  Please contact our office to discuss the specifics of your cases so we can determine if we can help you.
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Barry L.
10th March 2015 8:21am
My criminal conviction has an approved court order for expungement but my understanding is that it will take about 4 months to complete all the paperwork. If asked on employment form about crime and they allow "no" for an expunged crime, can I consider the court order good enough or do I still need to wait?
Admin:
As long as the judge has signed the court order granting the expungement, you can legally say "no" on the applications.  The only risk during the time between it being granted and the expungement order being processed with all the agencies is that if one of the employers does a background check on you, it may still appear. However, you can then show the employer the paperwork and let them know the case had already been expunged.
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Williams
13th February 2015 8:55am
Is it true that an expungement cannot be granted, in the state of PA, if you plead no contest? I was told this by another attorney. The conviction occurred almost 20 years ago and no other arrests made since.
Admin:
The expungement law in PA does not currently provide for the expungement of misdemeanor or felony convictions, unless you received and completed ARD or are over the age of 70.  Pennsylvania law permits expungement of ARD cases, summary offense convictions and cases that did not result in a conviction.
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Tecmarc
5th November 2014 11:59pm
Can I expunge 2 DUIs? The first one was an ARD and the second charge was a 3802A1 that happened six months later. I was found guilty more than 10 years ago and my record is clean since.
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Jenna Thorne
26th November 2014 9:00pm
Your ARD case may be eligible if you successfully completed it (and it was not revoked due to your second case). The second DUI conviction would not be eligible for expungement in Pennsylvania, unless you are over the age of 70. Please take our eligibility test to determine which cases are eligible for expungement in PA. The other option available to you in PA is to apply for a pardon, please visit our Pardon page for more information.
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mrslucasscott
20th August 2014 2:38am
Will an expungement for Summary Retail Theft allow me to have my name removed from NRMA and other such websites? If not, would Record gone be able to assist me in getting my name removed?
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MathewHigbee
20th August 2014 3:22am
The NRMA is the National Retail Mutual Association. It is a database made available only to retail stores who pay to be a member of the NRMA. The data comes from signed admissions by those who were accused of retail theft. It is not a court or government record. A court expungement will not have any effect on the NRMA. The good news is that the NRMA only keeps records of incidents for seven years, after that, records are no longer reported. You can read more about the NRMA at http://www.geninfo.com/theftda...
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mrslucasscott
20th August 2014 6:26am
Do you have to wait the 7 years or can you get a lawyer to have your name removed before then? There are other such websites like Hire Right. Will they only keep a name on file for 7 or so years? I was told by someone that GIS may be able to assist me in having my name removed? Is this true? If so where can I find a link to their site and what does GIS stand for?
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Jenna Thorne
25th August 2014 6:33pm
If you have your case expunged through the court, there is a chance that GIS would remove your name from the NRMA's database prior to the 7 years expiring. However, as previously mentioned, the expungement would not have a direct effect on the NRMA database, but it would give you some ammunition when dealing with them to request they remove your information.The NRMA's website seems to imply that they do comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), and therefore if you submit a dispute and provide an expungement order, you may be able to have your name removed at that point. Without an expungement order, I do not believe there is much an attorney could do to remove your information. GIS stands for General Information Systems, and they are the company that maintains the NRMA Retail Theft Database.
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mrslucasscott
17th October 2014 4:40am
I am more than halfway through the CAP program(a kind of ARD for Retail Theft). I have done my 6 hours of community service, written a letter of apology to the Loss Prevention Agent and did a research paper on the effects of retail theft on businesses. Now I just have to wait until my sponsor signs off on my program which should happen just after Thanksgiving. Until then I still need to check in with him once a week. My questions are as follows: Will my expungement also cover the fingerprints, the arrest record, and the citation (issued on the day of the arrest)? How long will the expungement process take and do I need to do something to initiate it in District Court? Who will able to see the file besides law enforcement? I work in retail now, but I would like to get a job at bank or maybe with the city or State where I live. Will I be able to pass a criminal background check once the charges are expunged? I would also like to attend nursing school, will I have any problems obtaining ... Read More
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Jenna Thorne
27th October 2014 10:19pm
I am not too familiar with the Community Accountability Program that you are currently completing. It does appear that the expungement should be completed automatically upon successful completion of the terms of the program by the court. However, CAP is a very new program in PA and you should ensure that if the court does automatically grant expungement of the case, that the expungement order is served on all agencies that might have records of the arrest. You would also want to obtain and save a copy of the court order directing expungement. Often, at least in ARD cases, the court would "expunge" the records but did not notify any other agencies of the expungement. Once an expungement is granted and served on all agencies, it should allow you to pass a background check and will remove all records relating to the arrest and court case. If the automatic expungement is not properly completed, you would be eligible to apply for an arrest record expungement through the county court ... Read More

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