GETTING AN EXPUNGEMENT IN FAIRFAX COUNTY

CAN MY CHARGE BE EXPUNGED 

 

Virginia has strict laws on whether a charge and arrest can be expunged. Under Virginia Code §19.2-392.2 your charge is eligible for expungement if either you were acquitted or a nolle prosequi is taken. If your charge was a misdemeanor and the charge was nolle prosequi or dismissed you are entitled to an expungement unless the Prosecution can show “good cause” as to why the court should deny the request. If your charge was a felony the burden is on the applicant to show the information related to the arrest and charge causes or may cause a manifest injustice to the applicant. Examples of a manifest injustice are negative effects with regards to employment, education, housing or credit.

 

WHAT CHARGES CANNOT BE EXPUNGED 

  • Any convictions​

  •  Deferred Dispositions: If your charge was ultimately dismissed but was pursuant to a deferred disposition it is not eligible for expungement.  For example, dispositions pursuant to Virginia Code §18.2-251 or Virginia Code §18.2-57.3, are not eligible for expungement because these first offender programs allow for dismissal of the charge only after terms or conditions are met through the court. 

  • Charges that are reduced to lesser-included offense. For example, if your Grand Larceny §18.2-95 charge was reduced to Petit Larceny §18.2-96, the Grand Larceny charge cannot be expunged. 

 

IS EXPUNGEMENT EVEN NECESSARY 

Even though your charge was dismissed or nolle prosequi the arrest will stay on your record if not expunged. The expungement process typically clears the arrest and conviction record from public view and ameliorates the negative consequences of a criminal record. There are numerous reasons why expunging your record benefits you in the long run. The primary reasons being: Employer Background Checks, College or University Background Checks, and Approval for Housing. Virginia Code § 19.2-392.4 even forbids employers (including state agencies) from inquiring about expunged charges, and explicitly authorizes applicants to deny the existence of charges which have been expunged.

 

 

THE PROCESS 

The process for obtaining an expungement in Virginia is set forth in Virginia Code §19.2-392.2.   It includes the following:

1.  Obtaining certified copies of the final disposition of your case.

2.  Filing a Petition for Expungement in the Circuit Court.

3.  Paying a filing fee.

4.  Providing a copy of the petition to the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office.

5.  Obtaining your fingerprint card from a local law enforcement agency.

6.  Sending the fingerprint card and a copy of the Petition for Expungement to the state police so a criminal history records check can be run.

7.  Scheduling a hearing with a Judge in the Circuit Court to determine if the expungement should be granted or denied.

8. A hearing and argument in front of a Judge in the Circuit Court.

How We Can Help

 

The expungement process in Virginia is detailed, time-consuming and often stressful. The assistance of counsel can greatly help with the painstaking process. The Pickett Law Group, PLLC is an experienced law firm with two generations of former prosecutors. We have successfully had expungements granted in Fairfax County, Arlington County, Loudoun County, and Prince William County. Contact us today for a free consultation.  

EXPUNGEMENT CASE RESULTS:

FEBRUARY 20, 2020

FAIRFAX COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT

Felony Expungement granted by Circuit Court Judge. 

FEBRUARY 26, 2020

FAIRFAX COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT

Felony Expungement granted by Circuit Court Judge. 

MARCH 9, 2020

FAIRFAX COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT

Misdemeanor Expungement granted.  

The Pickett Law Group, PLLC All Rights Reserved. 

3607 Chain Bridge Rd Unit D

Fairfax, VA 22030

703-218-8467

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