How to Find an Attorney to Expunge Your Criminal Record
Expert advice on choosing a qualified expungement attorney or lawyer to expunge your criminal record. Reviews and comparisons of top expungement attorneys in the state of Texas. If you have been arrested or convicted of a felony or misdememeanor in Texas, choose a specialized expungement lawyer to handle your case.
Any licensed attorney can represent you in court, but selecting a specialized expungement attorney not only increases your chance of a successful expungement, but saves you money as well. Specialized expungement attorneys are familiar with the court's rules and procedures which results in your record being expunged sooner for less money
List of our recommended expungement lawyers
There are many sites that offer "expungement assistance" services, which is just a term for making you do all the work. Make certain you are backed by a specialized expungement attorney.
Specialized expungement attorneys are able to argue your case in court and can handle objections from the district attorney. Companies that only offer "expungement assistance" cannot represent you in court and are not prepared to handle objections from the district attorney when expunging your record.
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The Statesman Reveals Deplorable Gaps in Texas Criminal Database
A report by Tony Plohetski of The Stateman reveals that Travis County is remarkably behind in updating the Texas Criminal Justice Information System, the state database used by law enforcement and state licensing agencies for criminal background checks. This type of lag in the updating of crucial information in the criminal justice system can have broad ramifications of which people with sealed or expunged records should be aware.
Travis County is the lowest-ranked county in Texas for keeping the database current with essential criminal information, including details such as whether a person was acquitted or found guilty in a case. An audit performed by the Texas Department of Public safety evaluating counties per calendar year indicated that in 2005 and 2006, Travis county had completed only 16% its cases. The rate has continued to increase since then, but only up to a 48% completion rate for 2009.
Most counties in Texas were keeping their databases at a rate of completion between 70 and 80%. This includes rural areas where the technology available is less advanced. It also includes counties, such as Harris County, which has a busier criminal justice system and yet boasts a completion rate of 97%.
Incomplete criminal records in the database slow investigation processes, requiring the targets of such background checks to provide court documentation to correct or contradict inaccuracies and errors. These records are not always immediately available to those who have been the target of a faulty background check. While a properly updated system should result in a speedy clearance of persons who are the subject of such a check, a shoddily maintained system contains inaccuracies and omissions that force defendants in the criminal justice system and their attorneys to constantly and vigilantly maintain hardcopy proof of proceedings.
The slow updating or removal of data can have a significant, adverse impact on people who have had their records sealed or expunged. Under Texas law, many people are eligible to have dismissed cases expunged or sealed. This is crucial for people who are seeking new employment or licensure from a state agency. An inaccurate record in the CJIS may result in false positives during employment background checks, such that an applicant?s file falsely indicates and discloses an arrest or conviction that it should not.
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In todays competive job market, every advantage helps. Surveys show that more than 80 percent of employers use a criminal background check in the process of hiring employees. Having your record expunged can be the difference between getting promoted or hired or passed by and staying unemployed. Spending a couple of hundred dollards a month to pay an experienced expungement attorney can provide you with a lifetime of returns. Plus, most expungement attorneys give you a money-back guarantee, so it is not just a great investement, it is a safe investment.