California Senate Bill 731: New Expungement Relief is Available for Those Convicted of a Felony and Sentenced to Prison
With a criminal record in California, it can be hard to obtain employment, a promotion, licensure, or a career after graduating with a college degree. An expungement, or dismissal, is available in California to a defendant with a misdemeanor or felony one year after completed probation at the court’s discretion and in the interest of justice.
What is an expungement?
An expungement allows a defendant to petition to withdraw their plea of guilty or nolo contendere and enter a plea of not guilty after the completion of their sentence. The court may permit the defendant to withdraw their plea of guilty or plea of nolo contendere and enter a plea of not guilty, or, if the defendant has been convicted after a plea of not guilty, the court shall set aside the verdict of guilty, and, in either case, the court shall dismiss the accusations or information against the defendant and the defendant shall be released from all penalties and disabilities resulting from the offense of which they have been convicted.
What is new & do I qualify?
Formerly if you were convicted of a felony and sentenced to prison, an expungement was not available to you. However recently enacted SB 731 makes felony convictions expungable even if sentenced to prison, so long as restitution has been paid, you are not on probation, parole, supervised release, or charged with the commission of a new offense, AND 4 years has elapsed without commission of a new felony. If the defendant seeks relief under this section for a felony that resulted in a sentence to the state prison, the relief available under this section may only be granted if that felony did not result in a requirement to register as a sex offender. In the past, one with such a case would have to wait 5-10 years and apply for a Certificate of Rehabilitation to have the conviction dismissed.
Additionally, this bill prohibits the record of a conviction for possession of specified controlled substances that is more than 5 years old and for which relief was granted from being presented to the Committee of Teacher Credentialing or from being used to deny a credential.
This relief does not however relieve you of the necessity to disclose the conviction for public office, licensure by a state agency, enrollment as a provider of in-home supportive services, or to own, possess, or have in your custody or control a firearm.
How can we help?
If you were turned down for an expungement because of a felony conviction in which you were sentenced to prison time, record clearance may now be available for you. Our experienced attorneys at Proper Defense are available for a FREE consultation to determine if you qualify for an expungement for such convictions. For a FREE consultation in the Fresno area, call (559) 825-3800. You can reach us at our Beverly Hills location by calling (424) 284-4066. You can also schedule an appointment online on our Contact Us page. Contact us today to get started toward your career goals with a clean record. Your future gets better with Proper Defense.