Expungement is when a conviction or arrest gets removed from an individual’s permanent record. However, “expungement” is not currently an option for adult criminal cases in Arizona. There are efforts to change this, but currently, the closest thing we have is to get a conviction “set aside”. There are some exceptions for juvenile criminal cases. Many of the same benefits of expungement are still obtained, though, by getting a conviction set aside.
Having a conviction set aside will change the disposition that shows on your criminal record. Instead of showing as “guilty” or “convicted” or similar language, if someone looks up and finds your conviction, it will show as being “dismissed” or “Set Aside”
Rather than having a past incident impact your ability to gain employment, find suitable housing, or exercise your rights, contact the Grand Canyon Law Group. Our Mesa expungement/Set Aside lawyers can advise you on getting a past arrest or conviction cleaned up on your record. Savvy legal guidance may be critical in protecting your freedoms and preserving your way of life.
According to Arizona Revised Statutes 13-905, eligibility for set aside depends on several factors, including sentence completion. An individual can only request set aside after their probation or prison sentence is over. If the sentence included fines, these also must be paid first, including all court-ordered fees. Then, the individual must file the appropriate applications for their sentencing, such as a set aside application after completing probation or a Certificate of Absolute Discharge following a prison sentence. Our knowledgeable attorneys have a great deal of experience and success in filing all the necessary paperwork for our Mesa clients.
The judge in a motion to set aside case also reviews numerous other factors in addition to the nature of the conviction and the completion of all required sentencing. These considerations could include:
Any other relevant factors could also be considered to determine if a Motion to Set Aside request is reasonable.
Set Aside is also only available for certain convictions. A.R.S. §13-905 lists the following convictions that do not qualify:
A criminal record is public and can be accessed by anyone, including potential landlords and employers. It can also affect your chances of securing a bank loan and being able to vote. Also, many people have questions about “restoration of rights,” such as civil rights and Second Amendment firearm rights after a felony conviction. These are separate, but often go hand-in-hand with our application to set aside a judgment.
It is important to note that because Arizona is not a pure expungement state, a conviction will not be entirely removed from state or Motor Vehicle Division records. This means that the court file does not get destroyed, and the DPS or the Board of Fingerprinting could still review the conviction in light of a fingerprint clearance card request.
However, setting aside a past arrest or conviction can improve career and housing prospects, restore civil rights, and help a person meet licensing requirements, such as those for working as a teacher or physician. Set Aside can also be useful in child custody disputes so that a criminal record does not influence the judge’s decision in granting parenting rights. There are many benefits to a cleaning up a criminal record, so those pursuing Set Aside would be wise to work with our experienced local attorneys to increase their chances of a successful outcome.
Doing all you can to clean up a conviction or arrest from your record can allow you to regain control of your life and enjoy opportunities you were previously denied. At Grand Canyon Law, our persistent Mesa expungement/Set Aside lawyers can help restore your future and relentlessly pursue your case. Call our firm today for a chance at starting anew.