New Jersey Expungement Basics

Just about everyone knows how damaging a criminal record can be in New Jersey. A New Jersey criminal record can affect many aspects of your life. It can be difficult if not impossible to get a job with a criminal record. Likewise, it can be difficult to get into schools and training programs with a criminal record in New Jersey. Indeed, a criminal record can affect your ability to do a number of things in New Jersey. If you want a firearms purchaser Identification Card (gun permit), you will have great difficulty unless you get an expungement. It can be quite difficult to adopt a child, coach a baseball team, or work at a school or day care unless you have your record expunged. Having a clean criminal record is priceless. If you’ve made a mistake or mistakes that have led to misdemeanor, disorderly persons, felony, or indictable offenses on your record you may be eligible to have your record expunged in the State of New Jersey.

Convictions are not the only thing that will show up on your record. Arrests are part of your permanent record as well. That means that even if your charges were dismissed or you were found not guilty, the arrest record will remain with you unless you get a New Jersey expungement. Unfortunately not many people realize this until it is too late and their arrest record leads to a denial of an application for a job or loan.

The New Jersey expungement statutes are quite particular and require application to your particular circumstance to determine your eligibility. The Law Office of Matthew B. Lun can provide a free, no-risk consultation to determine how the expungement laws apply to you and whether or not you are eligible to have your record expunged.

An Overview of the New Jersey Expungement Process

The Expungement Process requires several steps that must be completed properly in order for your record to be expunged. The outline below gives a basic overview of the steps involved in getting your New Jersey Record Expunged.

Gathering Records

The first step in the New Jersey Expungement Process is to gather all of the necessary records. This can be a daunting task in and of itself. The information needed from the records includes the date of any arrest, the statutory sections charged, any warrant numbers, summons numbers, and the disposition dates and details. This information is needed for any New Jersey records as well as any other states where you have been arrested or convicted.

Determining Eligiblity

Once all of the appropriate records have been gathered, the next step is to determine whether or not you are eligible for an expungement of your New Jersey criminal record. The statutes that detail the critera are located at N.J.S.A. 2C:52. In order to determine your eligibility for a New Jersey Expungement, a New Jersey Expungement Attorney will apply the facts of your situation to the expungment statutes to determine if you are eligible.

Drafting the Documents

If you are eligible for a New Jersey Expungement, a New Jersey Expungement Attorney wil. draft a petition for expungment. This is a notarized document that details each arrest and conviction that the petitioner has. This document is then filed with the Criminal Division of the Superior Court along with other required documentation. There is a filing fee associated with filing the petition for expungement. The current filing fee is $52.50.

Serving the Documents

Once the petition for expungement is filed with the court, the court will set a hearing date for the expungement. This hearing date will be listed in a document known as an Order Setting Hearing Date. This document must be officially served on several parties. It must be served on each Police Department that you have an arrest history with, each Prosecutor who has had a case against you, each Court where you have appeared, any probation office you may had contact with, and any jail you may been incarcerated in. Each of these parties must be given notice of your petition for expungement because they will be given the opportunity to object to your expungement.

Final Steps for Obtaining Expungement

The next step your New Jersey Expungement Lawyer will take is to prove to the court that the documents have been served on all the appropriate parties. Once that is done, and assuming that there is no objection the the petition for expungement, the hearing will occur. Not all courts require the petitioner to be present for the hearing. This is especially true in cases where there has been no objection to the expungement.

After the Expungement is Ordered

After the hearing, the judge will sign an expungement order. This is the offical document that orders the police and the courts to delete your criminal records. Your New Jersey Expungement attorney will serve this document on all of the necessary parties to ensure that they comply with the order. Once the agencies comply with the order, your expungement is complete and you can feel confident knowing that you have a clean criminal history.

How Much Does it Cost?

At the Law Office of Matthew B. Lun, Esq. we take a close look at the specifics of your case to determine the appropriate fee instead of providing a one-sized-fits number. We take pride in gathering the facts of each case before we provide a price or commit to handling a matter. The fact is that not all expungements are the same. Some expungements will require record collection and service upon twenty or more different parties. In other cases, only one agency may need notified. Those differences could amount to hundreds of dollars difference in the cost to get the record expunged.

Despite the differences in cost, we want our customers to have an expectation of what to expect when they contact us for assistance in getting their NJ record expunged. As such, the typical cost for a New Jersey expungement ranges from $550 to $1700 plus filing fees and postage, depending on the circumstances. A typical $550 expungement typically involves a single arrest that did not result in a conviction. From there, the more complicated the situation, the more legal work necessary, hence the increased cost.

You can always count on the Law Office of Matthew B. Lun, Esq. to provide you with an honest assessment of your case. We will take the time to listen to your situation and explain how we can assist. Call us today at 609-384-3770 today for a free consultation.

Am I Eligible?

The first question most people ask is “am I eligible”? That question requires several pieces of information. First you will need to know what is contained in your criminal record. This can be achieved by obtaining a background check, by memory, or by submitting records requests to individual courts and police departments.

The second step is to determine the level of any convictions you may have. In New Jersey offenses are classified as Crimes, Disorderly Persons offenses, and Municipal Ordinances. The NJ expungement law limits the number of offenses that can be expunged depending on the level of offense.

The third step in determining NJ expungement eligibility is to calculate the time that has elapsed since the convictions. In general, you must wait 10 years after conviction of a crime, 5 years after conviction of a Disorderly Persons offense, and 2 years after conviction of a municipal ordinance. Arrests that did not result in a conviction can generally be expunged immediately. There are some instances in which a conviction can be expunged prior to the passage of the requisite amount of time. A NJ expungement attorney such as Matthew B. Lun can help you make this determination.

The final step is to determine whether your offense, in light of your entire criminal record, is eligible for expungement. Generally you can have expunged no more than three disorderly persons offenses, assuming you have not indictable offenses on your record. If you have an indictable offense on your record, you can have it expunged if you have no more than two disorderly persons offenses and no other indictable offenses. In such a case, the indictable offense could be expunged but not the disorderly persons offense. This requirements can be difficult to decipher. The Law Office of Matthew B. Lun can help you determine your eligibility for a New Jersey Expungement. We offer reasonable rates and can accommodate most payment arrangements. Call us today for a free consultation.