Collin County Expunction and Non-Disclosure Lawyer
Client-Focused and Relentless Legal Counsel in McKinney, TX
Both expunction and non-disclosure are procedures that can clean up criminal
records, which could impact future job searches, professional licenses,
and even your ability to obtain credit. If you have been charged or arrested
for an offense and seek to remove this from your record, contact Underwood
& Associates for next steps.
Collin County expunction attorney William Underwood takes a client-focused
approach to every case, and you can trust him to fight relentlessly for
your right to a second chance – and a better future.
Reach out to our
McKinney attorney William Underwood at
(972) 449-7091 or
What Is Expunction?
In Texas, an expunction can permanently remove all records and files relating
to an arrest from your criminal history. As a result, you will not be
required to mention any instance of the offense on job applications or
Texas Expunction Requirements
Eligibility for expunction depends on the type of offense and the outcome
of the case. With few exceptions,
offenses ending in conviction or regular community supervision probation
are not eligible for expunction or nondisclosure.
In Texas, expunction applies to:
- Class C misdemeanors resulting in deferred adjudication (you are not found
guilty after the completion of your sentencing requirements), or
- offenses not resulting in conviction where charges were not filed, charges
were dismissed, or the person was acquitted or pardoned.
Be aware that even if there were no charges filed, there is still a minimum
waiting period (the “Statute of Limitations” for the alleged
offense) before you can file an application for expunction. For Class C misdemeanors the Statute of Limitations is 180 days; for Class
A and B misdemeanors you must wait 1 year; and for most felonies the Statute
of Limitations is 3 years.
Other than obtaining an acquittal at trial or having your charge dismissed
due to fraud or identity theft, the applicable statute of limitations
typically must expire for any crime for which you were arrested before
you can seek expunction.
Applying for an Expunction in Texas
To apply for an expunction, you must file your petition in the arresting
county. The clerk will then set a court hearing no earlier than 30 days
from the date of filing.
If you were convicted of a nonviolent misdemeanor such as a
DWI or Possession of Marijuana, non-disclosure may be the next best option
since you are not eligible for expunction. The qualifications for non-disclosure
are a little less stringent and similarly allow individuals the opportunity
for a fresh start.
What Is Non-Disclosure?
Non-disclosure hides certain offenses from public disclosure. However,
be aware that non-disclosure does not erase everything on a criminal record
as an expunction does, and offenses, as well as the probation sentencing,
will still be visible to criminal justice agencies, licensing agencies,
and certain government entities.
The benefit of filing for non-disclosure, as with an expunction, is that
you will not be required to disclose the offense information to employers,
landlords, lenders, or colleges. After a non-disclosure, an ordinary background
check will no longer reveal the case information, and only law enforcement
and certain state agencies will have access to the data.
Nondisclosure seals off all records pertaining to the individual’s
criminal charge and allows them to deny it ever happened.
An individual is not eligible for nondisclosure if they’ve ever been
convicted or received deferred adjudication for any of the following:
- offenses requiring sex offender registration;
- murder and capital murder;
- aggravated kidnapping;
- injury to a child, elderly, or disabled person;
- abandoning or endangering a child;
assault cases with an affirmative finding of
family violence; or
violation of bond conditions of certain family violence,
sexual assault or abuse, or stalking offenses.
There are two methods of non-disclosure in Texas:
- automatic non-disclosure for first-time misdemeanors; and
- non-disclosure with petition.
In the case of an automatic non-disclosure, if you meet all legal requirements
at the end of the period of deferred adjudication, the judge must order
nondisclosure. You do not have to take action to file anything, and there
is no waiting period.
Be aware that automatic non-disclosure applies only to first-time misdemeanors
(other than traffic fines) occurring after September 1, 2015 that resulted
in deferred adjudication ending in discharge or dismissal.
In a case of non-disclosure via petition, a petition is required for eligible
offenses and for misdemeanors that don’t qualify for an automatic order.
How Long is the Waiting Period in Texas for Non-Disclosures?
The minimum waiting period for filing runs from the date of dismissal of
the case or discharge from probation:
- 2 years for certain specified misdemeanors, such as Smuggling of Persons
or Unlawful Restraint (Penal Code Ch. 20); Sexual-related offenses (Ch.
21); Assaultive Offenses (CH. 22); Offenses involving family members (Ch.
25); Offenses against Public Decency, such as Disorderly Conduct or Harassment
(Ch. 42); Public Indecency, such as Prostitution or Possession of Child
Pornography (Ch. 43); and Offenses against Public Health, Safety, and
Morals, such as Unlawfully Carrying a Weapon (Ch. 46);
- 5 years for felonies;
- no waiting period for everything else.
You must file the petition for non-disclosure in the same court your actual
case was filed. The clerk will then notify the state prosecutor, who has
XX45 days from notification to request a hearing. If you meet all the
requirements, the judge should grant an Order of Nondisclosure.
How long is the expungement process in Texas?
In Texas, the expungement process takes about 30 days to schedule a hearing
date after the petition for expunction is filed.
The entire process usually takes from four to six weeks. If the court grants
an expungement, it usually takes up to 180 days for local, state, and
federal agencies to destroy their records. If the court grants an expungement,
it usually takes up to 180 days for local, state, and federal agencies
to destroy their records.
Seeking to Seal Your Criminal Record?
Whether you seek to permanently erase your criminal record through an expunction
or seal your record via non-disclosure, you should contact an experienced
attorney for legal counsel. Underwood & Associates can evaluate the
facts of your charge or arrest and determine the next best steps to seal
your criminal record. Everyone deserves a second chance; let Attorney
William Underwood fight for your rights – and your future.
Collin County expunction attorneys at Underwood & Associates at (972) 449-7091 or online here to schedule
your phone consultation today.