hero

New York Conviction Record Sealing

Can you get rid of your record?

TAKE THE TEST
  • Our lawyers created this free app to help you find out

play_circle_outline Watch Our Video Here

SEALING CONVICITONS IN NEW YORK

Don't Let Past Mistakes Hurt Your Future

Having a conviction on your record makes life difficult, even long after you’ve paid your debt to society. Everyone knows they make getting jobs more difficult and may take away your Second Amendment right to own a gun, but convictions also limit more opportunities and remove more rights than you may know. For example, two convictions for jumping a subway turnstile can get a green card holder deported.

Having a criminal record for the rest of your life isn’t a pleasant thought, especially after you’ve already served your sentence and paid your debt to society. Thankfully, many people qualify under New York’s new law to seal their criminal records, allowing them to move on from their past mistake. New York law permits the sealing of many misdemeanor and felony convictions, and, in some circumstances, allows you to restore your Second Amendment right to own a firearm.

Sealing your criminal record essentially hides it, making it inaccessible to the public. Certain law enforcement agencies can access sealed records, but the records will not appear in almost all background checks run by most employers, and you can legally state that you were never convicted of the sealed record. There are some exceptions discussed below, but, in most cases, sealing your record will make it as if the sealed offense never occurred.

Our law firm has helped thousands of clients restore their rights after a conviction, and we hear success stories from them often. If a conviction in New York is holding you back in life, keep reading to see what you can do about it.

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.

Can You Get Your Record Sealed?

Record sealing rules in New York can be quite complex, and the process is lengthy and difficult to navigate without an attorney experienced in these matters. Our law firm is happy to help guide you through the process.

  1. You cannot seal any of the Ineligible Offenses listed in the next section.

  2. You must wait ten (10) years since you’ve successfully completed the terms of your most recent sentence unless you were incarcerated. If you were incarcerated, a different waiting period applies. You may not be convicted of a new offense during the applicable waiting period.

  3. You may not have more than two convictions, and only one conviction may be for a felony.

  4. You may not have any pending charges or criminal proceedings.

  5. You may not seal Class A Felony convictions.

  6. You may only seal two convictions total in your lifetime

  7. You may not be a registered sex offender.

Many misdemeanor and felony convictions can be sealed in New York under CPL § 160.59. Before sealing your conviction in New York, you must satisfy the following requirements:

  • 1. How Long Do You Need to Wait?
    expand_more

    If you were not sentenced to prison, you must wait 10 years from the date you were sentenced in your most recent conviction. However, if you served time in prison, you must add any amount of time you served to the standard 10-year period and start the period when released from prison. For example, you if served four years in prison, the waiting period to satisfy would be 14 years from the date you were released. In contrast, if you were given probation instead of prison time, you would be eligible 10 years from the date you were sentenced.

  • 2. Which Offenses Cannot be Sealed?
    expand_more

    Convictions for the following types of offenses may not be sealed under New York law:

    • Homicide Offenses (defined in Article 125 of the New York Penal Code)

    • Sex Offenses (defined in Article 130 of the New York Penal Code)

    • Violent Offenses (defined in PL § 70.02)

    Ineligible Homicide Offenses
    • Criminally Negligent Homicide (PL § 125.10)

    • Aggravated Criminally Negligent Homicide (PL § 125.11)

    • 1st or 2nd Degree Vehicular Manslaughter (PL § 125.13 or PL § 125.12)

    • Aggravated Vehicular Homicide (PL § 125.10)

    • 1st or 2nd Degree Manslaughter (PL § 125.20 or PL § 125.15)

    • 1st or 2nd Degree Aggravated Manslaughter (PL § 125.22 or PL § 125.21)

    • 1st or 2nd Degree Murder (PL § 125.27 or PL § 125.25)

    • Aggravated Murder (PL § 125.26)

    • 1st or 2nd Degree Abortion (PL § 125.45 or PL § 125.40)

    • 1st or 2nd Degree Self-Abortion (PL § 125.55 or PL § 125.50)

    • Issuing Abortion Articles (PL § 125.60)

    • Conspiracy to commit any of the above offenses

    Ineligible Sex Offenses
    • Any conviction that requires you to register as a sex offender

    • Sexual Misconduct (PL § 130.20)

    • 1st, 2nd, or 3rd Degree Rape (PL § 130.35, PL § 130.30 or PL § 130.25)

    • 1st, 2nd, or 3rd Degree Criminal Sexual Act (PL § 130.50, PL § 130.45, or PL § 130.40)

    • Forcible Touching (PL § 130.52)

    • Persistent Sexual Abuse (PL § 130.53)

    • Sexual Abuse (PL § 130.65, PL § 130.60, or PL § 130.55)

    • 1st, 2nd, 3rd, or 4th Degree Aggravated Sexual Abuse (PL § 130.70, PL § 130.67, PL § 130.66, or PL § 130.65)

    • 1st or 2nd Degree Course of Sexual Conduct Against a Child (PL § 130.80 or PL § 130.75)

    • Female Genital Mutilation (PL § 130.85)

    • Facilitating a Sex Offense with a Controlled Substance (PL § 130.90)

    • Sexually Motivated Felony (PL § 130.91)

    • Predatory Sexual Assault (PL § 130.95)

    • Predatory Sexual Assault Against a Child (PL § 130.96)

    • Use of a Child in a Sexual Performance (PL § 263.05)

    • Promoting an Obscene Sexual Performance by a Child (PL § 263.10)

    • Possessing an Obscene Sexual Performance by a Child (PL § 263.11)

    • Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child (PL § 263.15)

    • Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child (PL § 263.16)

    • Facilitating a Sexual Performance by a Child with a Controlled Substance or Alcohol (PL § 263.30)

    • Conspiracy to commit any of the above offenses

    Ineligible Violent Offenses (Class B Felonies)
    • 2nd Degree Attempted Murder (PL § 110/125.25)

    • 1st Degree Attempted Kidnapping (PL § 110/135.25)

    • 1st Degree Attempted Arson (PL § 110/150.20)

    • 1st Degree Manslaughter (PL § 125.20)

    • 1st Degree Aggravated Manslaughter (PL § 125.22)

    • 1st Degree Rape (PL § 130.35)

    • 1st Degree Criminal Sexual Act (PL § 130.50)

    • 1st Degree Aggravated Sexual Abuse (PL § 130.70)

    • 1st Degree Course of Sexual Conduct Against a Child (PL § 130.75)

    • 1st Degree Assault (PL § 120.10)

    • 1st Degree Kidnapping (PL § 135.20)

    • 1st Degree Burglary (PL § 140.30)

    • 2nd Degree Arson (PL § 150.15)

    • 1st Degree Robbery (PL § 160.15)

    • Sex Trafficking (PL § 230.34(5)(a) & (b))

    • 1st Degree Incest (PL § 255.27)

    • 1st Degree Criminal Possession of a Weapon (PL § 265.04)

    • 1st Degree Criminal Use of a Firearm (PL § 265.09)

    • 1st Degree Criminal Sale of a Firearm (PL § 265.13)

    • Aggravated Assault upon a Police Officer or a Peace Officer (PL § 120.11)

    • 1st Degree Gang Assault (PL § 120.07)

    • 1st Degree Intimidating a Victim or Witness (PL § 215.17)

    • 1st Degree Hindering Prosecution of Terrorism (PL § 490.35)

    • 2nd Degree Criminal Possession of a Chemical Weapon or Biological Weapon (PL § 490.40)

    • 3rd Degree Criminal Use of a Chemical Weapon or Biological Weapon (PL § 490.47)

    • Conspiracy to commit any of the above offenses

    Ineligible Violent Offenses (Class C Felonies)
    • An attempt to commit any of the Violent Class B Felony Offenses listed in PL § 70.02 (see list above)

    • Aggravated Criminally Negligent Homicide (PL § 125.11)

    • 2nd Degree Aggravated Manslaughter (PL § 125.21)

    • 2nd Degree Aggravated Sexual Abuse (PL § 130.67)

    • Assault on a Peace Officer, Police Officer, Fireman or Emergency Medical Services Professional (PL § 120.08)

    • Assault on a Judge (PL § 120.09)

    • 2nd Degree Gang Assault (PL § 120.06)

    • 1st Degree Strangulation (PL § 121.13)

    • 2nd Degree Burglary (PL § 140.25)

    • 2nd Degree Robbery (PL § 160.10)

    • 2nd Degree Criminal Possession of a Weapon (PL § 265.03)

    • 2nd Degree Criminal Use of a Firearm (PL § 265.08)

    • 2nd Degree Criminal Sale of a Firearm (PL § 265.12)

    • Criminal Sale of a Firearm with the Aid of a Minor (PL § 265.14)

    • Aggravated Criminal Possession of a Weapon (PL § 265.19)

    • 1st Degree Soliciting or Providing Support for an Act of Terrorism (PL § 490.15)

    • 2nd Degree Hindering Prosecution of Terrorism (PL § 490.30)

    • 3rd Degree Criminal Possession of a Chemical Weapon or Biological Weapon (PL § 490.37)

    • Conspiracy to commit any of the above offenses

    Ineligible Violent Offenses (Class D Felonies)
    • An attempt to commit any of the Violent Class C Felony Offenses listed in PL § 70.02 (see list above)

    • Reckless Assault of a Child (PL § 120.02)

    • 2nd Degree Assault (PL § 120.05)

    • Menacing a Police Officer or Peace Officer (PL § 120.18)

    • 1st Degree Stalking (PL § 120.60)

    • 2nd Degree Strangulation (PL § 121.12)

    • 2nd Degree Rape (PL § 130.30)

    • 2nd Degree Criminal Sexual Act (PL § 130.45)

    • 1st Degree Sexual abuse (PL § 130.65)

    • 2nd Degree Course of Sexual Conduct Against a Child (PL § 130.80)

    • 3rd Degree Aggravated Sexual Abuse (PL § 130.66)

    • Facilitating a Sex Offense with a Controlled Substance (PL § 130.90)

    • Labor Trafficking (PL § 135.35 (3)(a) & (b))

    • 3rd Degree Criminal Possession of a Weapon (only (5), (6), (7), (8), (9) or (10) of PL § 265.02)

    • 3rd Degree Criminal Sale of a Firearm (PL § 265.11)

    • 2nd Degree Intimidating a Victim or Witness (PL § 215.16)

    • 2nd Degree Soliciting or Providing Support for an Act of Terrorism (PL § 490.10)

    • Making a Terroristic Threat (PL § 490.20)

    • 1st Degree Falsely Reporting an Incident (PL § 240.60)

    • 1st Degree Placing a False Bomb or Hazardous Substance (PL § 240.62)

    • Placing a False Bomb or Hazardous Substance in a Sports Stadium or Arena, Mass Transportation Facility or Enclosed Shopping Mall (PL § 240.63)

    • 1st Degree Aggravated Unpermitted Use of Indoor Pyrotechnics (PL § 405.18)

    • Conspiracy to commit any of the above offenses

    Ineligible Violent Offenses (Class E Felonies)>ul class="browser-default">
  • Attempted 3rd Degree Criminal Possession of a Weapon (but only (5), (6), (7), (8) of PL § 265.02)

  • Persistent Sexual Abuse (PL § 130.53)

  • 4th Degree Aggravated Sexual Abuse (PL § 130.65)

  • Falsely Reporting an Incident (PL § 240.55)

  • 2nd Degree Placing a False Bomb or Hazardous Substance (PL § 40.61)

  • Conspiracy to commit any of the above offenses

  • 3. How Many Convictions Can Be On My Record?
    expand_more

    The general rule in New York is that you may not seal more than two convictions, and only one can be a felony. If your convictions were all unrelated to each other, this is an easy rule, but this is not the case when your convictions are part of the “same criminal transaction,” as defined in in CPL § 40.10. When convictions are part of the “same criminal transaction,” they are only considered as one conviction for purposes of counting your convictions.

    What Convictions Are Part of the Same Criminal Transaction?

    Even if you have multiple convictions from multiple cases, they will count as one conviction if either of the following are true:

    • The acts or offenses were so closely related and connected in point of time and circumstance of commission as to constitute a single criminal incident, or

    • The acts or offenses were so closely related in criminal purpose or objective as to constitute elements or integral parts of a single criminal venture.

    When applying this rule, you need to count the most serious offense in the criminal transaction. For example, if you were convicted of a felony and misdemeanor in one incident, and you were later convicted of another felony and misdemeanor in a different incident, this would count as two felony convictions, making you ineligible.

    When you’re arrested, it’s frequently for more than one offense, and it’s common for prosecutors to file as many charges as possible for negotiating plea bargains. Make sure that you apply this rule correctly when answering this question.

    This example may be helpful in understanding this concept. If you were pulled over for driving while intoxicated, attempted to evade the police, and drugs were eventually found in the car. Although there are many different crimes in this set of facts, they would be considered as part of the same transaction, and you would count this group of crimes as only one conviction.

    Possession of Marijuana

    New York recently passed a law requiring the automatic expungement of some marijuana possession convictions. These expunged convictions would not count toward the total number of convictions on your record. This new law only applies to situations when you’ve been convicted of up to Class B possession of marijuana under either PL § 221.10 or 221.05.

    This new law says that it may take up to a year, or until August 27, 2020, for these types of marijuana records to be expunged. Your convictions won’t appear on your RAP sheet or criminal record history after August 28, 2019. However, if you apply for a job as a police officer, or apply fora gun license during this year, your records will be seen by officials.

  • 4. Is the Court Required to Seal My Record if I Qualify?
    expand_more

    The court is not required to grant your record sealing application. New York law specifically states that, once it’s been established that you qualify to seal your record, the sentencing judge or county supreme court has quite a bit of discretion in granting your order. Unless the district attorney does not oppose your application, a hearing will be held where the sentencing judge will hear evidence and arguments by both parties. New York law allows the sentencing judge or county supreme court to consider all relevant factors, but specifically lists the following factors as important in making this consideration:

    • The amount of time that has elapsed since your last conviction;

    • The circumstances and seriousness of the offense for which you are seeking relief, including whether the arrest charge was not an eligible offense;

    • The circumstances and seriousness of any other offenses for which you stand convicted;

    • Your character, including any measures that you’ve taken toward rehabilitation, such as participating in treatment programs, work, or schooling, and participating in community service or other volunteer programs;

    • Any statements made by the victim of the offense for which you are seeking relief;

    • The impact of sealing your record upon your rehabilitation and upon your successful and productive reentry and reintegration into society; and

    • The impact of sealing your record on public safety and upon the public's confidence in and respect for the law.

  • Legal Effect Of Sealing New York Convictions

    • How Sealing My Conviction Help Me Get a Better Job?
      expand_more

      Record sealing is New York’s best available option to improve your chances of getting a job with misdemeanor or felony convictions on your record. If your court order is granted, your sealed records will not be available to the public and will not appear in background checks for jobs, unless you’re seeking a job in law enforcement. Various criminal justice agencies may access sealed records, but they’re rarely permitted to share them or comment on their existence.

      Once you receive a court order sealing your record, you may legally state that you have not been convicted of that crime and act as though it never occurred. New York’s record sealing laws are very effective in helping you pass background checks that most employers require.

    • Will Sealing New York Convictions Restore My Second Amendment Rights?
      expand_more

      Unfortunately, sealing convictions in New York will have no effect on restoring your Second Amendment right to own a gun. However, if you’re eligible to seal your record, you may be able to restore your firearm rights by obtaining a Certificate for Relief from Disabilities or Certificate of Good Conduct.

      We will go into more detail regarding restoring Second Amendment rights in New York on our New York 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 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 Obtaining a Sealing Your Record in New York 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 Rights 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 New York'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 New York 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 New York criminal law, fight to protect your rights, and assist you in moving forward in life without the effects of a New York 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 New York state courts, provides low price guarantees, and is here to fight for you and put your criminal record behind you!