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SELF MOREY & ASSOCIATES
A PROFESSIONAL LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY

Expungements

Is your past catching up with you?  Well, don't let it unnecessarily impact your future.  Having an arrest record can severely impact important aspects of your life from employment opportunities and housing prospects to state-issued licensing approvals and acceptance into educational institutions.  Currently, under Oklahoma law, if you meet certain qualifications, you may be eligible to apply for closure of your arrest and/or court records.  Oklahoma statutes provide for two basic types of expungements. 

The first type is found in Title 22 O.S. §§18 and 19.  These statutes provide for the expungement of an arrest record for those who meet one of the following ten qualifications:

1. The person has been acquitted;

2. The conviction was reversed with instructions to dismiss by an appellate court of competent jurisdiction, or an appellate court of competent jurisdiction reversed the conviction and the district attorney subsequently dismissed the charge;

3. The factual innocence of the person was established by the use of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) evidence subsequent to conviction, including a person who has been released from prison at the time innocence was established;

4. The person has received a full pardon on the basis of a written finding by the Governor of actual innocence for the crime for which the claimant was sentenced;

5. The person was arrested and no charges of any type, including charges for an offense different than that for which the person was originally arrested are filed or charges are dismissed within one (1) year of the arrest, or all charges are dismissed on the merits;

6. The statute of limitations on the offense had expired and no charges were filed;

7. The person was under eighteen (18) years of age at the time the offense was committed and the person has received a full pardon for the offense;

8. The offense was a misdemeanor, the person has not been convicted of any other misdemeanor or felony, no felony or misdemeanor charges are pending against the person, and at least ten (10) years have passed since the judgment was entered;

9. The offense was a nonviolent felony, as defined in Section 571 of Title 57 of the Oklahoma Statutes, the person has received a full pardon for the offense, the person has not been convicted of any other misdemeanor or felony, no felony or misdemeanor charges are pending against the person, and at least ten (10) years have passed since the conviction; or

10. The person has been charged or arrested or is the subject of an arrest warrant for a crime that was committed by another person who has appropriated or used the person’s name or other identification without the person’s consent or authorization.  (Records expunged pursuant to paragraph 10 of this section shall be sealed to the public but not to law enforcement agencies for law enforcement purposes.

For purposes of this act, "expungement" means the sealing of criminal records.  These include the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) criminal history records, city and county law enforcement arrest records, and court files.


The second type of expungement is found in Title 22 O.S. §991c which provides for the expungement of a plea of guilt or no contest for defendants who have been placed on deferred sentences.  In order to qualify for such an expungement, your deferred sentence must have been for five years or less, and you must have successfully completed your probation. 


If an expungement is granted under §991c, the arrest will remain on the person’s OSBI criminal history, but the disposition of the case will be amended to read “plead not guilty, case dismissed”.  In addition, the court files will also be sealed.

 

If you have received a deferred sentence but also meet one of the qualifications established under §18, an expungement of your entire arrest record may still be able to be pursued..

 

Stacy R. Morey is the former Chief Legal Counsel for the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation and has handled more than 2,500 expungement cases.  She is a recognized expert on expungement law and is a published author on the subject.  She has also been a featured speaker to legal organizations, including the Oklahoma Bar Association, and conducted classes for other attorneys on how to handle these types of cases.

Let the Oklahoma expungement lawyers at Self, Morey & Associates help you find a way to a brighter future.  Call today to schedule a consultation.   

 

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