Expungement of Gloucester County Criminal Records
Because we’re Gloucester County defense attorneys, the lawyers at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall see people at their most human and fallible. If you have an arrest on your record that ultimately amounted to nothing, or a mistake in your past for which you’ve paid your debt to society, you can seek to have your Gloucester County criminal record expunged.
New Jersey law allows for people to seek an order of expungement, meaning that whatever past conviction or arrest on your record is removed from public access. It’s like a clean slate.
If your criminal record in Gloucester County is expunged, prior charges and arrests do not appear in background checks, unless you apply for a job in corrections, law enforcement, or the New Jersey judicial branch. For many people, this is the ultimate second chance, as it allows you legally to answer “no” to a loan or job application question about having any criminal convictions or prior arrests.
If you live in Glassboro, Deptford Township, Franklin Township, Washington Township, Swedesboro, Harrison Township, Monroe Township, Mantua Township, or another Gloucester County municipality, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can determine your eligibility to seek an order of expungement and assist you with the complex expungement process.
Obtaining an expungement involves submitting multiple forms to the superior court or municipal court in the county where your prosecution or arrest took place. If a judge is persuaded to grant your petition for expungement, you need to ensure this is recorded correctly by distributing the judge’s order to law enforcement and other relevant organizations.
To learn more about expunging a criminal record in Gloucester County, schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with us today by contacting us online or by calling our Woodbury office. The legal staff at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall draws upon more than 100 years of combined experience as prosecutors and public defenders. We would be glad to show you how we can help you move toward a brighter future.
Why Seek Expungement of Gloucester County Criminal Records?
Anyone arrested and charged with a crime accumulates a public record attached to their identity. Even before the digital age, this record was available in databases for law enforcement and other authorities, complete with details of any fines, convictions, or prison time. Anyone performing a background check could review this record, even if the charges were dropped or a person was found not guilty.
Today, prospective employers, schools, banks, mortgage companies, and even private individuals can conduct online criminal background checks and see events in your past. If you have an arrest — regardless of the outcome — this prior criminal record can follow you like a dark cloud.
A record of a conviction or an arrest can keep you from obtaining:
- Employment (even with New Jersey’s “ban the box” Opportunity to Compete Act, which limits such inquiries)
- Rent-subsidized housing and other social services
- Private educational scholarships
- Bank loans and credit cards
- Federal student loans
- A New Jersey firearm permit
However, thanks to New Jersey legislators, the expungement process provides a possibility for people who have been convicted or arrested but have turned their lives around to make a fresh start. The legal team at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall is proud to help people seeking expungement of a Gloucester County criminal record take advantage of this option.
Clean Your Slate of Criminal Arrests and Convictions in Gloucester County
If you’re granted an expungement of New Jersey criminal records, any mention of your name regarding an offense within the criminal justice system effectively disappears (except if you’re pursuing a career in this field). An expungement removes from any criminal justice or law enforcement agency, court, and correctional or detention facility (such as a jail or prison) any record of the following:
- Processing records
- Photographs (mug shots)
- “Rap sheets”
- Commitment orders
- Judicial docket records
- Index cards
Once a judge grants an order for expungement, all records of any detention, detection, apprehension, arrest, trial or disposition of an offense within the New Jersey juvenile or adult criminal justice systems are isolated and extracted from public access. As far as the State of New Jersey is concerned, it’s as if whatever occurred never happened.
Do I Qualify to Have My Criminal Records Expunged in Gloucester County?
Expungement of Gloucester County criminal records is a powerful tool, but it is not automatic. People seeking expungement must qualify, and they must make a formal request to a judge.
The law is designed to clear the records of those who have learned from their misdeeds or who were never found guilty. New Jersey also allows people to petition for expungement of some criminal records after a certain amount time, provided a person has been satisfactorily released from incarceration, completed any probation or parole, and all fines are paid. To seek an expungement, you also must not face any pending criminal charges.
That said, there are some people who cannot have their records expunged. If you have been convicted of more than one indictable offense, such as burglary, aggravated assault, credit card fraud, robbery, or possession and distribution of a controlled dangerous substance (CDS), that record cannot be removed.
Your record also cannot be expunged if you have been found guilty more than twice of a disorderly person or petty disorderly person municipal ordinance such as shoplifting, lewdness, simple assault, resisting arrest, or possessing drug paraphernalia.
If you’ve been convicted of sale, possession, or distribution of illicit drugs, you must meet certain conditions for your record to be expunged. The charge must have been for 25 grams or less of marijuana or 5 grams or less of hashish, or the charge was otherwise minor (a third- or fourth-degree offense).
In addition, records of particular serious crimes cannot be expunged, including:
- Rape and other sexual offenses
- Producing or possessing biological agents, nuclear or radiological devices, or chemical weapons
- Selling or manufacturing child pornography
- Embracery (attempting to influence a juror)
Other records that cannot be expunged include:
- DWI convictions and other motor vehicle offenses
- Civil orders
- Crimes connected to service in appointed or elected public office
We’ll Do the Work Required to Petition for Expungement in Gloucester County
If you have questions or concerns about whether you meet the specifications to petition for expungement in Gloucester County, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can help — and possibly sooner than you realize.
If you meet the requirements for expungement, you can petition to have your record expunged at several points:
- Immediately (for charges that were dropped)
- 6 months after finishing a pre-trial diversionary program (PTI) after charges were dropped
- 2 years after completing the penalty for violating a municipal ordinance
- 5 years after completing the penalty for a conviction in an indictable offense
- 5 years after completing the penalty for a crime committed as a juvenile
Let our skilled expungement attorneys and staff assist you by handling the meticulous research and paperwork this process requires. Although you could attempt to seek an expungement yourself, expungement can be a complex and time-consuming process because it involves citing statues and tracking down arrest dates, original complaint and docket numbers, disposition dates, and the specific punishment.
The New Jersey Courts guide to expungement suggests obtaining a lawyer. The guide also notes that “even though your records may be eligible for expungement, if you miss any of the required steps, your Petition for Expungement may be denied. In that case, you will have to start over.”
Ultimately, a judge decides whether to grant a petition for expungement. If your petition hits any snags or is denied, our legal team can work with you to assess why and chart your next steps.
Ready to Expunge Your Gloucester County Criminal Records and Move On?
Don’t let an arrest that went nowhere or a past mistake continue to haunt you. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have the knowledge and resources you need, and we handle expungement petitions throughout New Jersey. Visit us today at our Woodbury office at 38 Cooper St., Suite 204. You also can contact us online, or call us to set up a free, no-obligation consultation.