The purpose of this page is to help our clients better understand our Arizona set aside service. You will find answers to questions we are frequently asked. If your question is related to your eligibility, please take the free online eligibility test.
Simply click on a question to see its answer:
Arizona law does not use the term or offer an expungement; however, setting-aside in Arizona has the same affect as conviction expungement in California. Setting aside a conviction in Arizona removes the finding of guilt and dismisses the case, so a person can truthfully say they were not convicted.
ARS 13-907 states that a person has to fulfill the conditions of probation or the sentence in order to file for a set aside. However, restitution being paid to the victim is a factor to be considered and not a strict requirement in the statute. You may also be able to petition the court to reduce the amount owed. (ARS 13-805 and 13-810).
Yes, we would be happy to help you to find out what is on your criminal record and what we can do to help you get it cleared. We charge a small research fee for that service, and the fee would be applied to any services you hire us to perform after the research is complete.
Set aside applications need to be completed and filed separately for each case. Therefore, we do charge per case, but the number of counts in each case does not affect the price. If you are eligible for multiple cases, we do offer a discount on the additional cases.
We use the terms Arizona set-aside and Arizona expungement interchangeably.
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, if 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. (ARS 13-907)
-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.
No. In order to have a case sealed, you cannot be convicted of the charge, and you must prove that the arrest was wrongful. (ARS 13-4051) Please see the section on record sealing.
We use the terms set-aside and expunge interchangeably.
We do not handle federal expungement cases; however, if you were convicted of a federal felony and would like to restore your right to own a firearm, please see our Arizona firearm rights restoration page for more details.
You are eligible to have your felony reduced to a misdemeanor if your conviction was an undesignated offense. You can call the court where you were convicted and they will be able to tell you if your conviction was undesignated. (ARS 13-604)
Typically, it takes about 3 to 4 months to expunge an Arizona record. We will file your petition as quickly as we can, but the timeframe can vary depending on the specifics of your case, including how long ago your case was and whether the DA objects to the set aside.
We will work on your case as quickly as possible to get the petition filed with the court as soon as we can. However, the courts handle cases in the order they are received. As we work on your case, we can provide you a letter indicating we are in the process of having your case set aside for you to provide to your employer or potential employer.
No, you should not have to appear in court to have your case set aside. We will go to court for you. If the judge does specifically ask that you attend the scheduled hearing and you are unable to attend, we will file a motion requesting the court excuse your appearance.
Cases can be denied due to: (1) an inaccuracy in the court file or the petition, (2) the court does not believe that setting aside your conviction is in the interest of justice because you do not satisfy the factors that the Court is required to consider, (3) you violated you probation, (4) fines were not fully paid, or (5) the recency of your release from probation or prison.
In the unlikely case that your set aside is denied, we will evaluate why the judge denied your case, and based on that, we will determine the best way to move forward. If refiling your petition is not the best option, we offer a money-back guarantee
We will send you the court order signed by the judge setting aside your conviction. Public criminal record databases will be updated to reflect that your conviction was set aside and your case was closed.
We use the terms set-aside and expunge interchangeably.
If we are unsuccessful in getting your case set aside, we do have a money-back guarantee for some cases. Please view the pricing section of the set aside page for details.
The set aside can still be used for sentencing purposes in a subsequent criminal case. The case can also be used as an element of another offense. (ARS 13-907(e)).
You do not have to disclose a case that has been set aside, and you can answer with confidence to any inquiry or to an application for employment that you have not been convicted of a crime. (ARS 13-907(d))
We use the terms set aside and expunge interchangeably.
Convictions that require registration are not eligible to be set aside. (ARS 13-907)
No, a set aside will not clear the case from your DMV record. However, offenses automatically are removed from your driving record after a set number of years, unlike your criminal record which remains until you petition the court for relief.
The Border Patrol has discretion when deciding whether to grant a Sentri pass; therefore, having your conviction set aside could be the difference between having your request accepted or denied, because the set aside will show that you have resolved all matters with the court.
If you only have a misdemeanor conviction, then you did not lose the right to vote. Upon completion of your sentence for your first felony, your civil rights are automatically restored. If the case you wish to set aside 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 to have your rights restored. Civil rights restoration is included in the setting aside service. Civil rights restoration does not include firearm rights, which may have to be petitioned for separately. (ARS 13-912, 13-905, and 13-906)
Since everyone's situation is different, you should discuss your case with an immigration attorney to determine the impact your criminal record may have on your immigration status. You can contact our immigration attorney at 714-617-8395.
It can depending on your case.
If you were convicted of a felony and your case was not a "serious offense," the set aside of your conviction will restore your firearm rights. "Serious offenses" under Arizona law are: first degree murder, second degree murder, manslaughter, aggravated assault resulting in serious physical injury or involving the discharge, use or threatening exhibition of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument, sexual assault, any dangerous crime against children, arson of an occupied structure, armed robbery, burglary in the first degree, kidnapping, sexual conduct with a minor under fifteen years of age, child prostitution. (ARS 13-907; ARS 13-706).
If you were convicted of "serious offense" felony, a set aside will not restore your right to own a firearm and there is a separate process that must be completed to restore your firearm rights. To determine eligibility for restoration of the right to own a firearm, please see the section on restoring gun rights. (ARS 13-905)
Under the federal Lautenberg Amendment to the Violence Against Women Act, there is a lifetime ban on those convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence as defined by the federal law. An AZ set aside does not lift the federal ban if the Lautenberg Amendment applies to you.
You can serve on an Arizona jury if you: (1) are at least eighteen years of age, (2) are a United States citizen, (3) are a resident of the jurisdiction in which you are summoned to serve or you name and address appears on the master jury list as presumed to be a member of said jurisdiction, (4) have never been convicted of a felony, unless your civil rights have been restored to you, (5) have not been adjudicated mentally incompetent or insane. (A.R.S. § 21-201)
If you have been convicted of a felony, upon absolute discharge of your conviction you have the right to submit an application to withdraw your plea of guilty and restore your civil rights so that you may serve on a jury. (16A A.R.S. Rules Crim. Proc., R. 29)
You can truthfully say you were not convicted if questioned by any potential employer. (ARS 13-907(d)) Even though the case may be viewed on extensive background checks, it will appear as a dismissed case and not a conviction; a set aside will certainly increase your chances of employment.
If you have a "Breach of Trust" or "Dishonesty" conviction, section 19 of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act (FDIA) allows banks to bar you from jobs that they you may otherwise be qualified to hold. This applies even to expunged convictions.
However, you may be able to seek a waiver from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). We recommend speaking with an attorney to discuss whether you are able to apply for a waiver from the FDIC.
What appears on a background check depends on the type of background check that is done. If the employer does your 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 AZ Department of Public Safety report, the report will show that there was a case, but that the case was set aside and there is no conviction or finding of guilt.
The AZ 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 the case history will state that it was set aside.
We use the terms set-aside and expungement interchangeably.
After the judge signs the set aside, the court sends the granted order to the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS). The Arizona DPS will update their records; the public criminal record databases will also be updated to reflect the conviction was set aside and your case is closed.
The court's records will be updated within 48 hours. The AZ DPS has up to 30 days to update their records. However, they typically update their records before the 30 days expire.