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Sealing Records and (Juvenile) Expungement of Colorado Criminal Records

A Colorado Attorney that Can Help To Seal and Expunge Criminal Records – H. Michael Steinberg

Our law firm receives calls nearly every day from many people who have some type of criminal activity in their past. They learn this history has been following them through their life, and want to know what they can do about it. Many people who have been involved with the criminal justice system, either through an arrest, or plea of no contest, or sentenced to a withhold of adjudication, find that even a minor involvement in the criminal justice system or an arrest can remain on their record, forever preventing them from achieving many of their goals in life.

The Impact Of A Criminal History On Your Future

Criminal records have a negative impact on a person’s life – many times reducing and even eliminating the freedom to move forward and achieve many things that you are trying to accomplish , including obtaining gainful employment, obtaining or maintaining academic enrollment in a university, eligibility for scholarships, developing a career or advancing in your employment, etc. This negative impact interferes in a person’s ability to become educated, earn a livelihood and support themselves and their loved ones.

There are many good, hard working citizens who, at one time in their life – perhaps when they were much younger, found themselves involved in a criminal act and became part of the criminal justice system.

Not Career Criminals

These people no intention of becoming a “career criminal,” they simply made a mistake, went through the system to pay for that mistake, learned from that mistake and want to simply get on with their lives and move forward to reach goals that will take them down a road far removed from their past.

Perhaps it was an offense committed fifteen (15) years ago, or a misdemeanor offense committed when you were younger. It doesn’t matter how long ago it was, or what the offense was. Once you are in the criminal justice system, your past follows you, and can interfere with your ability to move forward in your life.  In this day of computer technology, with only a click of the mouse, there are many people, agencies, employers, etc., that will have access to your Colorado criminal history.

Additional Impacts of a Colorado Criminal History

Before you consider applying for entrance to a college or university, or for an academic scholarship, for a car or home loan, or to rent a home/apartment, or for a new employment position that you are hoping will establish a career, you should know that more and more people are requiring extensive credit and criminal background checks to eliminate those who they deem to be not credible.

There are more people applying than there are jobs, scholarships, etc., so that many sources such as universities, corporations, finance companies, credit companies, etc., can afford to be selective when determining who is the more credible applicant.

There is good news. You should also know that you don’t have to be subjected to rejection because of background screening. If you have received and successfully completed a “diversion” type offer ( known in Colorado as a Deferred Judgement and Sentence  – or DJ and S). There are also some criminal (drug) convictions that can be sealed, clearing your criminal record and giving you a fresh start — free of the stigma of any previous criminal act.

At our law office we understand that many individuals, while not “career criminals,” nevertheless may have a criminal record that remains a thorn in their life. By working with you to seal (or for juvenile cases expunge) the records of your past offense, we can help you obtain the clean start you need, and help you turn your history from a negative into a positive. This means you can confidently apply for academics, scholarships, jobs, loans, credit – virtually anything that requires a background check – without fear of rejection and allowing you to achieve your goals.

Frequently Asked Questions – Regarding Sealing or Expungement of Criminal Records

What Makes Does Having A Criminal Record Mean?

A criminal record is a history of the arrest, arraignment, pleading (claims of not-guilty or no contest), criminal charging affidavit and all documentation that is held in any clerk’s office, judicial branch or law enforcement agency’s files regarding the matter.

Can a Criminal Record Be Sealed?

Depends … Certain charges can be cleared or cleansed from one’s criminal record through the legal process known as sealing or expungement. Arrests that result in plea bargains to diversion type dispositions and withhold conviction – ultimately leading to the withdrawal of the plea and dismissal of the case – can be sealed and thus removed from public records subject to certain statutory exceptions.

Certain Drug Related Convictions Can Be Sealed – All Others ( Unless Juvenile Cases ) Cannot

Follow this LINK to my web page on sealing drug convictions in Colorado

What Does Sealing Criminal Records Accomplish?

The process of sealing one’s criminal records is not a complete erasure of the files but, rather, seals or closes the file from public view.

How Is That Different from Expungement?

The process of expungement of criminal records removes the arrest record from being a public record. An expunged record is no longer visible when a background check is done. Expungement is usually the best way to guarantee that a past mistake does not come back to haunt you.

How Does My Arrest Affect Me?

In any arrest that results in a dismissal or nolle prosequi, wherein the state has dropped the case, the record can be expunged as long as you have never been adjudicated guilty or delinquent for another charge.

Remember, a potential employer, college, university, credit company, etc., can easily obtain your criminal record or history. Law enforcement agencies, i.e., police, county, court, clerk’s offices, prosecutorial agencies, and the FBI maintain criminal histories. Many of these records are now available for the public, via the internet. If your criminal record is sealed or expunged, then you may be legally allowed to say that the conviction or arrest never occurred on job applications, rental applications, or for many other purposes.

A single charge or arrest can have a devastating impact to your career and future, especially if you are between jobs, seeking a promotion at your job, applying for new employment, applying for colleges, universities and/or post-graduate schools.

Can All Criminal Charges Be Sealed?

No. Not all criminal charges or convictions can be sealed or expunged. Please contact or call us at (303) 627-7777 so H. Michael Steinberg can give you information on whether or not your charges are eligible to be sealed..

How Long Will the Sealing Process Take?

The sealing or expungement process can take, on average, anywhere from two (2) to nine (9) months to complete. It is not possible to give an exact or definite time, as the process is dependent upon several factors.

How Do I Start the Process?

That’s simple. Contact The Steinberg Law Firm to discuss your matter and receive a free consultation to determine whether you qualify for a sealing.  If you qualify, we can assist you in sealing your criminal record, and you may not even have to make a court appearance.

Call us at (303) 627-7777 for your free consultation. H. Michael is very experienced in the sealing of criminal records and is available to talk with you to answers any specific questions you might have.

If you prefer, you may email us or fill out the form on the contact page of this website.

H. Michael Steinberg has been a Colorado criminal law specialist attorney for 29 years. For the First 13 years, he was an Arapahoe – Douglas County DA – career prosecutor. In 1999 he formed his own law firm for the defense of Colorado criminal cases. He has published various articles regarding the practice of criminal law and frequently provides legal analysis on radio and television, appearing on the Fox News Channel, CNN and Various National and Local Newspapers and Radio Stations.

If you feel the need to discuss your case right now with H. Michael please call his cell (720) 220-2277, otherwise call his office during normal business hours, or fill out the Contact form on this site. From our office in Denver, Colorado, he represent clients throughout the Front Range of the State of Colorado.


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___________________________
H. Michael Steinberg Esq.
Attorney and Counselor at Law
The Colorado Criminal Defense Law Firm of H. Michael Steinberg
A Denver, Colorado Lawyer Focused Exclusively On
Colorado Criminal Law For Over 30 Years.
DTC Quadrant Building
5445 DTC Parkway, Penthouse 4
Greenwood Village, Colorado, 80111
Primary Web Site:  http://www.HMichaelSteinberg.com
Colorado Criminal Law Blog:  www.Colorado-Criminal-Lawyer-Online.com
Main:  303.627.7777
Cell:  720.220.2277
24/7 Pager:  303.543.4433
FAX (Toll Free):  1.877.533.6276
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