How Does The California DUI Expungement Process Work?
When it comes to A DUI conviction, your attorney can file a motion to expunge the case after your probation is over. There is no such thing as a true expungement in California, meaning that the conviction is not completely taken off your record.
If your expungement for dismissal is granted, your guilty or no contest plea is taken back, a not guilty plea is put in its place, and the matter is dismissed. If someone were to run your criminal record, they would see that you had a DUI but that you got the case dismissed.
You have to be off of probation before you're eligible to seek expungement. Even though you got the case expunged or dismissed, if you pick up a new DUI in 10 years, they can charge you with a second-time DUI.
A form has to be filled out correctly to apply for dismissal. You have to be eligible for the expungement. You can't be on probation in that particular case or any other case.
The court will see if you violated your probation while on probation for that particular crime, and the judges can deny the expungement based on any violations.
The form will be sent to the courthouse, and the judges will take turns evaluating and ruling on the expungement. Often, we'll get notices from the court saying that there will be a hearing, and the judge will be heading on your expungement or dismissal motion.
They will send notice to your lawyer as to whether or not the expungement is granted. If it is granted, it will be stamped by the Superior Court, and you'll be in a position to be able to show any employer that the court has dismissed your case.
What Happens If I Get A Subsequent DUI Offense?
If you get your case expunged or dismissed, and then you pick up a new DUI case, they always look back ten years in California.
If you had a DUI conviction during that timeframe, they're going to count it against you, regardless of whether or not you've got the case expunged or dismissed.
The prosecutors will still be able to consider that in deciding how they want to deal with the new criminal case. They won't use it before making it a second time DUI, but they certainly see it and consider it.
Can Early Termination Of My Probation Help Me?
If you had your probation terminated early, that would be one of the factors you need to seek a DUI expungement or dismissal.
However, at least a year has to go by from the time you were convicted of your DUI to be eligible to get your case expunged. The legislature has indicated that you need to be on probation for at least three years related to a DUI.
They'll argue against terminating your probation early in a DUI case, and they'll usually be successful unless you've got some compelling reason why you can't be on probation anymore. The courts will typically deny the motion.