Eric David, Partner

Eric David

Partner

Eric David is a native Hoosier and with a broad range of professional experience in the US and China. He is a trained social worker and a licensed attorney in Indiana and New York.

Since finishing his undergraduate studies at Purdue University, he has worked for non-profits, government agencies, private firms, and international institutions.

In all his work, he is passionate about helping his clients solve problems and be the best they can be. Mr. David resides in Indianapolis with his partner and their two greyhounds.

EXPUNGING CONVICTIONS IN INDIANA

Don’t Let Past Mistakes Limit Your Future

There isn’t anyone who wants a criminal record. Criminal records can make obtaining a job nearly impossible, make it hard to find a decent place to live, and even take away constitutional rights like your Second Amendment right to own a gun. Once you’ve finished your sentence and paid your debt to society, you shouldn’t be permanently branded and punished for the rest of your life.

If you’re arrested or charged with a crime in Indiana, the Indiana State Police and courts usually create a criminal record that’s easy for anyone to access and never goes away. Indiana’s online criminal search portal makes it incredibly easy for anyone to find your criminal record. It doesn’t even require a background check. Anyone with an internet connection can find detailed, private information about you in a matter of minutes. Fortunately, Indiana has passed some of the most forgiving expungement laws in the country.

Indiana law permits the expungement of both misdemeanor and felony convictions. Expunging your conviction releases you from the judgement of guilt, allowing you to legally state that you have not been convicted of the expunged conviction. In addition, if there isn’t another reason your firearm rights have been taken away, expunging a felony conviction will typically restore your Second Amendment right to own a gun.

Our law firm has helped thousands of clients get rid of their criminal records, and we hear success stories from them often. If a conviction is currently holding you back, keep reading to see if we can help.

This Information is for You

Since the majority of people reading this aren’t lawyers, we’ve tried to simplify the legal jargon on our website, so regular people may follow along and get the information needed to understand their rights. However, before we get started, we should be clear that some of this information can get complicated, and, in many cases, it’s best to seek the assistance of an experienced lawyer.

To help you understand your rights, our lawyers have developed a tool that can be helpful in figuring out your options. This tool can’t be perfectly accurate in every situation, but our lawyers have invested substantial time and resources working to make it as accurate as possible.

You can get started by using our Secure Eligibility Test, or you can give us a call at (844) 947-3732 to see if our legal staff is available for a free consultation. Be aware that our staff is often busy with current clients and a high volume of calls and appointments. If you’re serious about getting rid of your record, your best bet is to take our Secure Eligibility Test and then schedule an appointment to discuss your results and options.

Do You Qualify to Expunge Your Conviction?

Indiana law allows you to expunge most misdemeanor and felony convictions. To make the most use out of the following information, try to track down the following:

  • The date of your most recent conviction;
  • The specific offense that you were convicted of; and
  • The level of crime you were eventually convicted of.

General Requirements to Expunge Indiana Convictions

The general requirements to expunge a conviction under current Indiana law (primarily IC 35-38-9) are the following:

  • You cannot have any pending criminal charges or criminal proceedings;
  • All fines, fees, court costs, and restitution have been paid;
  • You cannot have a conviction for a prohibited offense listed below;
  • You must satisfy any required waiting periods for the offenses discussed below; and
  • You may only expunge your convictions once in your lifetime (within a 365-day period).

NOTE: for felony convictions where “serious bodily injury” resulted, you must also obtain the written consent from the prosecutor to expunge your offense.

Felonies Resulting in Bodily Injury

As you will see below, if there was “bodily injury” to another person there are different requirements in expunging a felony conviction. The question is what is “bodily injury”? Under Indiana law, bodily injury can be fairly easy to establish. The Indiana Criminal Code defines bodily injury as “any impairment of physical condition, including physical pain.” I.C. 35-31.5-2-29. For our purposes, "bodily injury" also includes "moderate bodily injury," which is defined as “any impairment of physical condition that includes substantial pain” under I.C. 35-31.5-2-204.5.

“Serious Bodily Injury” is defined by IC 35-31.5.2.292 as “injury that creates a substantial risk of death or that causes serious permanent disfigurement; unconsciousness; extreme pain; permanent or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member or organ; or loss of fetus.”

It's important that you spend time evaluating whether your conviction involved “bodily injury” because if it is found to have been involved in your offense, it will typically be more difficult to expunge your felony conviction.

  • 1. Prohibited Offenses

    Offenses Prohibiting Any Expungement of Convictions

    Convictions for certain offenses will prevent you from expungement of convictions entirely. If you have a conviction for any of the following offenses, you will not qualify to expunge any convictions. These offenses include:

    • You cannot have a conviction for an offense that would categorize you as a Sex or Violent Offender under IC 11-8-8-5, a list of these specific offenses is provided below; or
    • You cannot have two or more felony convictions that involved the unlawful use of a deadly weapon on more than one occasion.

    Prohibited Offenses for Class D Felony Convictions

    If you’re seeking to expunge a Class D felony conviction under IC 35-38-9-3 that did not involve bodily injury, you may not expunge any of the following offenses:

    • A conviction for of Perjury (IC 35-44.1-2-1) or Official Misconduct (IC 35-44.1-1-1);
    • A conviction for murder or a felony that caused the death of somebody (IC 35-42-1);
    • A conviction for human or sexual trafficking under (IC 35-42-3.5);
    • A conviction for a sex crime listed in IC 35-42-4, which are listed below;
    • An elected official convicted of an offense while serving the official’s term or as a candidate for public office; or
    • A felony conviction that resulted in bodily injury to another person.

    Prohibited Offenses for More Serious Felony Convictions (or those with bodily injury)

    If you’re seeking to expunge a felony conviction under IC 35-38-9-4 that is more serious than a Class D felony, or you have a felony conviction that involved bodily injury, you may not expunge any of the following offenses:

    • A conviction for Official Misconduct (IC 35-44.1-1-1);
    • A conviction for murder or a felony that caused the death of somebody (IC 35-42-1);
    • A conviction for human or sexual trafficking under (IC 35-42-3.5);
    • A conviction for a sex crime listed in IC 35-42-4, which are listed below;
    • An elected official convicted of an offense while serving the official’s term or as a candidate for public office; or
    • A felony conviction that resulted in serious bodily injury to another person.

    Prohibited Offenses for Felony Convictions Involving Serious Bodily Injury

    If you’re seeking to expunge a felony conviction that involved serious bodily injury or was committed by an elected official or candidate under IC 35-38-9-5, you may not expunge any of the following offenses:

    • A conviction for Official Misconduct (IC 35-44.1-1-1);
    • A conviction for murder or a felony that caused the death of somebody (IC 35-42-1);
    • A conviction for human or sexual trafficking under (IC 35-42-3.5);
    • A conviction for a sex crime listed in IC 35-42-4, which are listed below; or

    List of Prohibited Offenses – “Sex or Violent Offenders”

    If you’ve been convicted of any of the following criminal offenses, Indiana classifies you as a “sex or violent offender” as defined in IC 11-8-8-5:

    • Rape (IC 35-42-4-1)
    • Criminal deviate conduct (IC 35-42-4-2) (before its repeal)
    • Murder (IC 35-42-1-1)
    • Voluntary manslaughter (IC 35-42-1-3)
    • Kidnapping (IC 35-42-3-2), if the victim is less than eighteen (18) years of age, and the person who kidnapped the victim is not the victim's parent or guardian
    • Criminal confinement (IC 35-42-3-3), if the victim is less than eighteen (18) years of age, and the person who confined or removed the victim is not the victim's parent or guardian
    • Promotion of human trafficking under IC 35-42-3.5-1(a)(2)
    • Human trafficking under IC 35-42-3.5-1(d)(3) if the victim is less than eighteen (18) years of age
    • Child molesting (IC 35-42-4-3)
    • Child exploitation (IC 35-42-4-4(b) or IC 35-42-4-4(c))
    • Vicarious sexual gratification (including performing sexual conduct in the presence of a minor) (IC 35-42-4-5)
    • Child solicitation (IC 35-42-4-6)
    • Child seduction (IC 35-42-4-7)
    • Incest (IC 35-46-1-3)
    • Sexual battery (IC 35-42-4-8)
    • Possession of child pornography (IC 35-42-4-4(d) or IC 35-42-4-4(e))
    • Promoting prostitution (IC 35-45-4-4) as a Class B felony (for a crime committed before July 1, 2014) or a Level 4 felony (for a crime committed after June 30, 2014)
    • Promotion of human trafficking of a minor under IC 35-42-3.5-1(b)(1)(B) or IC 35-42-3.5-1(b)(2) Sexual trafficking of a minor (IC 35-42-3.5-1(c))
    • Sexual misconduct by a service provider with a detained or supervised child (IC 35-44.1-3-10(c))
    • An attempt or conspiracy to commit a crime listed in this subsection
    • A crime under the laws of another jurisdiction, including a military court, that is substantially equivalent to any of the offenses listed in this subsection
    • Sexual misconduct with a minor (IC 35-42-4-9 ) as a Class A, Class B, or Class C felony (for a crime committed before July 1, 2014) or a Level 1, Level 2, Level 4, or Level 5 felony (for a crime committed after June 30, 2014), unless the person is convicted of sexual misconduct with a minor as a Class C felony (for a crime committed before July 1, 2014) or a Level 5 felony (for a crime committed after June 30, 2014), or the person is not more than four (4) years older than the victim if the offense was committed after June 30, 2007, or five (5) years older than the victim if the offense was committed before July 1, 2007; and the sentencing court finds that the person should not be required to register as a sex offender.

    List of Prohibited Offenses – Sex Crimes Listed Under IC 35-42-4

    If you’ve been convicted of any of the following sex offenses listed in IC 35-42-4, you will not be eligible for expungement under Indiana law:

    • Rape (IC 35-42-4-1)
    • Child Molestation (IC 35-42-4-3)
    • Child Exploitation (IC 35-42-4-4)
    • Vicarious sexual gratification; fondling in the presence of a minor (IC 35-42-4-5)
    • Child Solicitation (IC 35-42-4-6)
    • Child Seduction (IC 35-42-4-7)
    • Sexual Battery (IC 35-42-4-8)
    • Sexual Misconduct with a Minor (IC 35-42-4-9)
    • Unlawful Employment by a Sexual Predator (IC 35-42-4-10)
    • Offender Against Children (IC 35-42-4-11)
    • Sex Offender Internet Offense (IC 35-42-4-12)
    • Sex offender unmanned aerial vehicle offense (IC 35-42-4-12.5)
    • Inappropriate Communication with a Child (IC 35-42-4-13)
    • Unlawful Entry of School Property by a Serious Sex Offender (IC 35-42-4-14)
  • 2. Satisfying the Waiting Period

    The amount of time that you need to wait to expunge a record in Indiana depends on a couple of different factors, including:

    • The level of the offense, and
    • Whether or not bodily injury or serious bodily injury was caused in the commission of a felony conviction.

    Misdemeanor Convictions: the waiting period to expunge a misdemeanor conviction is five (5) years from your most recent conviction, however, this time period can be shortened if the prosecutor agrees in writing.

    Class D/Level 6 Felonies: the waiting period to expunge a Class D or Level 6 Felony is eight (8) years from your most recent conviction, however, this time period can also be shortened if the prosecutor agrees in writing.

    All Other Felonies (including those that resulted in bodily injury): the waiting period to expunge all other felonies, even felonies that involve bodily injury, is both eight (8) years from your most recent conviction and three (3) years from completion of your sentence. Again, this time period can be shortened if the prosecutor agrees in writing.

    All Other Felonies (including those resulting in serious bodily injury): the waiting period to expunge all other felonies, even felonies that involve serious bodily injury, is both 10 years from your most recent conviction and five (5) years from completion of your sentence. Again, this time period can be shortened if the prosecutor agrees in writing. In fact, the prosecutor needs to agree in writing to even permit expungement of this type of conviction.

  • 3. The One Expungement Per Lifetime Rule

    One of Indiana’s most unique requirements is that they will only let you expunge your convictions one time in your lifetime. It’s not that you can only expunge one conviction in your lifetime, it’s that you need to expunge all your Indiana convictions during a one-year period under IC 35-38-9-9(i). However, this does not apply to arrest records or criminal records that didn’t result in a conviction.

    This means that you should probably expunge all your eligible convictions at once, and if you must wait to expunge all your convictions, it may be worth it. There are some exceptions, but the rule is clear that you must expunge all your Indiana convictions within 365 days.

Legal Effects of Expunging Your Conviction

  • How will expunging my conviction help me get a job?

    Expunging an Indiana conviction is the best way to improve your chances of obtaining a job with a criminal record. After expunging a conviction, you are no longer guilty of that crime and may legally state that you have not been convicted of the expunged conviction. However, there is one important thing to understand about what an expungement in Indiana actually does.

    When your conviction is expunged, it is still available in the public record, but it is marked as “expunged” and cannot be legally used against you in most hiring situations. However, misdemeanors and lower-level felonies are also automatically sealed when expunged, which removes the record from the public record entirely. For serious felonies, particularly for those where bodily injury is involved, you will probably not be able to have your record sealed after expungement.

    The bottom line is that an expungement, with or without sealing, is the best way to improve your chances of getting employed with an Indiana conviction on your record. A recent study from the University of Michigan shows that an expungement increases your chances of getting a job by 11% and your wages by 22% in the first year alone.

  • Will expunging my conviction restore my Second Amendment rights?

    In most cases, yes. Unless there is another reason your firearm rights have been taken away, expunging a conviction that restricted your firearm rights will restore them under both Indiana and federal law. However, if you have ever been convicted of a serious violent felony defined in IC 35-47-4-5, an expungement will not restore your right to own a firearm. A list of serious violent felonies can be found on our Indiana Firearm Rights Restoration page. This rule has been made clear by the Indiana Attorney General Opinion 2019-6.

    We will go into more detail regarding restoring Second Amendment rights in Indiana on our Indiana Firearm Rights Restoration page, but restoration typically involves both state and federal law that should be handled by an experienced lawyer. The lawyers in our firm regularly handle complex firearm rights restoration issues, so a good first step in exploring whether you can restore your firearm rights would be to take our Secure Eligibility Test. Then, if appropriate, set up a time to speak with our legal staff about how to proceed.

What You Need to Do to Expunge Your Indiana Conviction

If you are tired of having a criminal record hold you back, reach out to us by taking our Secure Eligibility Test or by giving us a call at (844) 947-3732Our law firm has helped thousands of people with criminal records move on in life, leaving many of the negative effects of a criminal record behind. Our experienced attorneys and legal staff are here to help you figure out what criminal record clearing services best fit your needs, and then help you accomplish your goals. Using our secure, confidential Eligibility Test is the best way to get the process started.

Some of the potential benefits of expunging your criminal record in Indiana include:

  • Removing a finding of guilt and closing the case on your criminal record to help you get a better job
  • Restoring your Second Amendment right to own a firearm
  • Becoming eligible for professional licenses you previously did not qualify for
  • Increased eligibility for student loans, housing assistance, and government programs
  • Improving your ability to obtain higher-paying job opportunities
  • Improving access and admission to college and other educational resources

We Are Here to Help

Each of Indiana’s methods for dealing with your criminal record have different requirements and are meant for different circumstances. To move forward, it’s important to determine what Indiana criminal record services are available to you, and then select the services that will provide the greatest benefit. Eastman Meyler, PC is here to help you navigate this very specific area of Indiana criminal law, fight to protect your rights, and assist you in moving forward in life without the effects of an Indiana criminal record.

You can trust that you will get exceptional service from our law firm, as we have an A Rating from the Better Business Bureau, and prestigious attorney rating services such as Thompson Reuters and Avvo list our attorneys as Super Lawyers and Superb Attorneys. Our law firm has attorneys licensed to practice law in all Indiana state courts, provides low price guarantees, and is here to fight for you and put your criminal record behind you!