Expunging a DUI Conviction in California
A conviction for driving under the influence (DUI) can adversely affect your employment opportunities. Through expungement, you can have the court reopen your case, set aside your conviction and replace it with a dismissal, thereby allowing you to answer “no” to the question of criminal record on most background checks. This process allows you to make a fresh start after you have completed your sentence and probation for DUI.
Having established Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP in 1987, we understand the challenges clients face because of criminal convictions. We want to help you in any way we can to move forward with your life. Guiding you through record expungement is the final part of that process.
The process of expunging a misdemeanor DUI
To be eligible for expungement, you must complete your DUI probation before you can begin the process of expungement. The probation period for a first-time misdemeanor DUI typically runs three to five years. Even if you complete all of your sentencing requirements, such as paying your fines, completing community service, and completing your DUI program, you would not be considered eligible for expungement until your probation ends or is terminated early.
Our DUI expungement process begins with the following:
- Determining your eligibility
- Obtaining a copy of the minute order from the court
- Drafting the petition and assisting you with a personal declaration regarding the offense and why the court should grant your request for expungement
- Filing the petition with your declaration, character references, and other materials as part of a mitigation packet with the court and to all relevant parties
- Arguing your case to the court if a hearing is required in your case
Restrictions on your DUI expungement
You may have many reasons for wanting to expunge your record — notably, the ability to honestly answer “no” to any question on a job application about whether you have a conviction on your criminal record. However, we advise you about some of the restrictions on your DUI expungement, including:
- The court can still consider your prior conviction for the sake of sentencing enhancements, such as on a 2nd or 3rd DUI within 10 years from your first
- Your DMV driving printout would still include the the DUI on record, making the information available to auto insurance carriers
- Your arrest remains on your record and you may be required to disclose your pre-expungement conviction under certain conditions — for example, on applications for government jobs, citizenship or professional licenses.
Find out whether you are eligible for expungement of your DUI conviction
Call Takakjian & Sitkoff, LLP at 888-579-4844 or contact us online for a complete analysis of your qualifications for expunging your DUI conviction. Your first appointment is free and we remain available to you 24/7.