We all make mistakes, but some of them have a longer lasting effect than others. Having a DWI conviction on your record can cause problems long after you’ve served any sentence, paid fines, attended classes and done all that is necessary to regain your license.
Your DWI could affect your chances of getting a job, applying for a loan (even a student loan), being accepted as a tenant in a rental property, buying a gun or child custody issues. But there is hope – under certain circumstances, you can have your DUI expunged or ask for the records to be sealed.
What is Expungement?
The word expunge means to, ‘obliterate or remove completely’. In the legal sense, this means that the court would act as though the conviction had never existed, including removing it from the public record.
Not all states allow the expungement of a DWI, so it is important that you take advice from someone who knows the situation in your area, for example, an Austin DWI attorney.
The alternative to expungement is having those records sealed. This means that while they still exist for law enforcement and the courts, they are not shared with other agencies.
Can I Have my DWI Conviction Expunged?
Possibly. Having a DWI conviction expunged is a long and complex process. While you could handle this yourself, the simplest and easiest option would be to ask an Austin DUI lawyer to do this for you. To find a lawyer, you could ask friends for recommendations, or search the internet for ‘DWI lawyer Austin’ or ‘DWI attorney Austin’.
The circumstances in which a DWI can be expunged are:
- If you were arrested, but not convicted of the offense
- If the charges were dismissed
- If the charges were reduced from a DWI (for example, a Class C Traffic Violation)
- If the DWI conviction happened when you were a juvenile
- If you were given a deferred adjudication
What is an Order of Non-Disclosure?
An order of non-disclosure may be an option if expungement isn’t. This order will be issued by the court, and must then be sent to any organizations or agencies which hold information about the DWI. The order prevents them from disclosing that information.
Unlike expungement, your offense will still remain accessible to law enforcement and the courts, however, it will not be returned as part of credit or employment checks.
When Can’t I Get an Expungement or Order of Non-Disclosure?
You are unlikely to be able to have your record expunged if:
- You have multiple DWI convictions
- You were convicted of a felony in the five years prior to the DWI
Talk to the Experts
There is a lot to consider when it comes to seeking expungement or an order of non-disclosure. Although it is possible for someone to make these applications themselves, it takes a considerable amount of time and energy to do so, and there is no guarantee that you will be successful.
As experts in the field, we will be able to assess quickly whether you have a good chance of success. You can confidently leave the handling of your DWI conviction to us. Please get in touch today for help.DWI conviction