Mr. Eastman serves as the firm’s managing partner, and is licensed to practice law in California, Oregon, and Texas.
Sam has helped thousands of clients expunge, seal, and set-aside records across the country, and has a passion for criminal justice reform. Previously, Mr. Eastman represented a number of corporate clients, focusing on tax law, mergers and acquisitions, and a variety of corporate transactions.
Mr. Eastman earned his JD and LLM from the University of San Diego School of Law, and his undergraduate degree from the University of Oregon.
HOW TO EXPUNGE A KENTUCKY CRIMINAL RECORD
Don’t Let Past Hurt Your Future
The stain of a criminal record often prevents individuals from obtaining the housing they want, getting the job they need, or receiving a desired license. These are just a few examples of how a Kentucky criminal record can hold you back from achieving important life goals. Furthermore, Kentucky has made it fairly simple to conduct a criminal background check on behalf of an individual.
Fortunately, Kentucky has recently expanded is laws to permit the expungement of some felony and potentially all misdemeanor convictions. Once an offense is expunged in Kentucky, the records are deleted and it is as though the case never occurred. Additionally, the matter shall not appear on official state-performed background checks, and the person may state that no record exists. Therefore, the person whose record is expunged shall not have to disclose the record or any matter relating to it on an application for employment, credit, or other similar application.
Know Your Options
Since Kentucky’s recent expungement law expansion, now many more offenses are eligible to be removed. Our firm offers the following legal services for those with a criminal record in Kentucky:
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, confidential Eligibility Test and then schedule an appointment to discuss your results and options.
Legal Effect of Kentucky Criminal Record Removal
There are a few different scenarios whereby a person was arrested for a crime, but the case resulted in a favorable outcome for the defendant. In other words, the person was eventually found not guilty, or the case was dismissed, etc. In many of these circumstances, a person can petition to have their criminal record expunged in Kentucky.
A person who has been charged with a criminal offense and who has been found not guilty, or the charges have been dismissed, may petition to expunge all records. The expungement petition shall be filed after sixty (60) days following the order of acquittal or dismissal by the court. There must be no current charges or proceedings pending relating to the matter for which the expungement is sought. The court has discretion in granting these expungements.
Expungement of Felony Charges Not Resulting in a Grand Jury Indictment: Similar to non-conviction records, a person against whom felony charges originally filed in the District Court have not resulted in an indictment by the grand jury, may petition the court in which the charges were filed to expunge all records. The expungement petition shall be filed twelve (12) months following the date of the District Court decision to hold the matter to a grand jury. There must be no current charges or proceedings pending relating to the matter for which the expungement is sought. If the court grants the motion, it shall dismiss the charges and order the expunging of the records.
Expungement of Pretrial Diversion or Deferred Adjudication Cases: Pretrial diversion is available to a person charged with a Class D felony offense who has no prior felony convictions within the past ten (10) years immediately preceding the commission of this offense. The program is not available to persons charged with offenses for which probation, parole, or conditional discharge is prohibited. The court may permit Class C felony offenders to participate. See list of Class D Felonies eligible for expungement in Kentucky.
A guilty plea is a precondition for participation, but upon successful completion of the probationary period, the charges are listed as “dismissed-diverted” and “shall not constitute a conviction.” In such a case, expungement is available, and the defendant shall not be required to list this disposition on any application for employment, licensure, or otherwise unless required to do so by federal law. At least sixty (60) days must have passed since completion of a pretrial diversion or deferred adjudication program.
Kentucky Felony Expungement
A new Kentucky law passed 2016 allows courts, upon filing a petition, to vacate specified Class D felony convictions, dismiss the charges, and expunge the record. A verified applicant must wait five (5) years after the completion of the person’s sentence or completion of probation or parole, whichever occurs later. The court may order the judgment vacated, dismissed, and eligible for expungement if:
- The person had not previously had a felony conviction vacated and the record expunged;
- The person had not in the five (5) years prior to the filing of the application to have the judgment vacated been convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor; and
- No proceeding concerning a felony or misdemeanor is pending or being instituted against the person.
- Class A, B, and C felonies are not eligible. You can expunge more than one Class D felony conviction only if
- Class A, B, and C felonies are not eligible. You can expunge more than one Class D felony conviction only if they are a part of the same case or arose from the same incident.
Kentucky Misdemeanor Expungement (and lower-level violations/traffic violations)
In Kentucky, you can apply to expunge an unlimited number of misdemeanors, even if they were in different cases or counties. A petition shall be filed five (5) years after the completion of the person’s sentence or five (5) years after the successful completion of the person’s probation, whichever occurs later. The court shall expunge the records if it is found that:
- The offense was not a sex offense (ex: rape, sodomy, sexual abuse, sexual misconduct, indecent exposure) or an offense committed against a child (ex: abandonment, endangering the welfare, or unlawful transaction with a minor);
- The person had not in the five (5) years prior to the filing of the petition for expungement been convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor;
- No proceeding concerning a felony or misdemeanor is pending or being instituted against the person; and
- The offense is not one subject to enhancement for a second or subsequent offense or the time for such an enhancement has expired.
Any person convicted of a misdemeanor prior to July 14, 1992, may petition the court in which he/she was convicted for expungement of the record of one (1) misdemeanor offense or violation or a series of misdemeanor offenses or violations arising from a single incident, provided that the same conditions outlined above are met.
In cases of possession of marijuana, synthetic drugs, or salvia, and in cases of first time possession of controlled substances, the court may set aside and void the conviction upon satisfactory completion of treatment, probation or other sentence (and issue a certificate and subsequent order to seal records).
Kentucky Juvenile Record Expungement
The expungement of juvenile records is available, upon petition to the court, with regard to status offenses, misdemeanors, or violations only. Expungement is not available for dependency, neglect, and abuse issues, or where the offense would have been a felony if committed by an adult. The petition shall be filed two (2) years after the date of termination of the court’s jurisdiction over the person, or two (2) years after his/her unconditional release from commitment to the Department of Juvenile Justice or the Cabinet for Health and Family Services or another agency, except that the two (2) year period may be waived by the court under extraordinary circumstances.
A juvenile offense may not be expunged if:
Upon sealing, only the person or those named in the sealing order may inspect the records, and the juvenile may deny the existence of any record.
Restoration of Kentucky Firearm Rights
In general, there are three (3) ways in which Kentuckians can lose their right to possess a gun:
- For any felony conviction after 1994;
- A conviction for a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence; or
- Being subject to certain types of restraining orders.
However, there are some variances in the law depending on when the conviction occurred. If you were convicted of a felony prior to 1975, Kentucky law does not prevent you from owning a weapon (although you may be prevented from getting a concealed carry). If you were convicted of a felony between 1975 and 1994, you will be eligible to possess a long rifle, but not a hand gun. As mentioned above, any felony conviction that occurred after 1994 will prevent you from firearm ownership for life.
If you obtain a pardon for your conviction by the Kentucky Governor or President of the United States, your firearm rights may be restored. Under the new expungement laws, those convicted of Class D felonies may be eligible for restoration of firearm rights. This is because the State vacates and removes the conviction of a felony before subsequently expunging and destroying the records of the offense. However, the current interpretation of the law cannot be stated with complete certainty until further legal decisions are rendered.
The legal process of removing a criminal record can be difficult without the assistance of an experienced law firm. If you have a criminal record in Kentucky that you want expunged and/or would like to have your civil rights restored, Eastman Meyler, PC understands the process of expunging criminal records and can assist you with the process. Our firm offers a free, confidential Eligibility Test, or you may give us a call to discuss your eligibility and expungement services for Kentucky.
What You Need to Do to Get Rid of Your Record
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) 947-3732. Our 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 Kentucky include:
- Removing a finding of guilt from your criminal record to help you get a better job
- Becoming eligible for professional licenses you previously did not qualify for
- Restoring your Second Amendment Right to bear arms
- No longer being treated as a felon
- 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
The expungement process in Kentucky can be difficult without the assistance of an attorney. Our firm is available to guide you through the process and answer your questions at every step of the way. Contact us today to get the process started, and begin to put your criminal record behind you for good.
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 Kentucky state courts, provides low price guarantees, and is here to fight for you and put your criminal record behind you!