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Being convicted of a criminal offense in California can be detrimental in so many ways. You may pay fines, get placed on probation, or potentially spend time in jail. Unfortunately, the penalties do not stop there. Each year, millions of citizens with a criminal record find it difficult to obtain a well-paying job, get approved for loans, or even find adequate housing. 

Though the crime may have been committed a long time ago, the consequences of having a criminal record can follow you for the rest of your life. These consequences include personal anguish or the guilt, embarrassment, or shame of holding a criminal record that no longer represents you today. Though it is possible to petition for expungement on your own, you can dramatically increase the likelihood of a judge approving your petition by working with an experienced expungement attorney in Los Angeles.

If you are ready to start the process of having your criminal conviction set aside, apply to expunge your record online today.

What is an Expungement?

In the state of California, getting your criminal conviction expunged is synonymous with a dismissal. It withdraws your guilty or no contest plea and replaces it with a plea of “not guilty.” If approved, your criminal case will show as dismissed on a background check. 

An expungement allows you to truthfully answer “no” when asked by your employer, potential landlord, or bank if you were ever convicted of a criminal offense. Our attorneys understand how expungements can change your life for the better. We feel confident we can help you accomplish this goal.

Reasons to Consider Expungement

Here are the main reasons people seek to expunge a criminal record and obtain an attorney to get it done even faster:

Types of Convictions We Handle


Having an infraction on your criminal record can cause you to miss out on job opportunities, the ability to obtain certain licenses, and more. An expungement attorney can help you have the following (but not limited to) types of infractions dismissed from your record:

  • Possession of Marijuana (depending on the amount)
  • Trespassing
  • Illegally purchasing alcohol while underage
  • Failure to appear in court
  • Disturbing the peace
  • Petty theft


After the requirements of a misdemeanor conviction have been satisfied, it may be eligible for dismissal. If you are unsure, connect with one of our experienced expungement attorneys. Our expungement attorneys are ready to help you to expunge the following types of misdemeanor offenses, among others: 

  • Petty theft
  • Public intoxication 
  • Shoplifting
  • Drug convictions
  • Domestic violence
  • Assault and battery
  • Probation violations 


In California, expungement only applies to felonies if you successfully served your prison sentence in one of the county jails. If you served your time within a state prison, you are not eligible to have your record expunged. However, there are other options available, like obtaining a certificate of rehabilitation or applying for a pardon from the governor. 

Check with our Los Angeles expungement attorneys to learn if your felony conviction is eligible for expungement. 

How a Criminal Record Affects Your Life?

A criminal record can impact your life in many unexpected ways. Not only will you have to suffer the consequences of your conviction – fines, probation, community service, or jail time, there is typically also a residual effect associated with criminal convictions. 

A conviction on your criminal record may negatively affect child custody rights, employment opportunities, driving privileges, immigration opportunities, housing, credit score, or the ability to get a loan. Not to mention, a criminal record often triggers shame and regret about your past.

Benefits of Getting an Expungement

Getting approved for an expungement in Los Angeles can feel like being granted a second chance at life. Clearing your criminal record can totally change your situation (for the better) in so many important ways. This can be especially true for your long-term financial outlook as it will allow you to expand your career options, potentially make more money, get better interest rates and the list goes on!

Listed below are some of the most common benefits that are associated with having your criminal record expunged with the help of an expungement attorney. 

  • Opportunities for new and higher-paying jobs
  • Ability to live in the neighborhood that you want 
  • No longer getting declined for loans based on your criminal record
  • Don’t have to deal with the shame and guilt of having a conviction on your record
  • Can confidently and truthfully tell others that you have not been convicted of a crime

Who Is Eligible?

Expungement is available to those convicted of infractions, misdemeanors or felonies and did not serve their sentence in a state prison or under the purview of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. 

You must satisfy the requirements of your conviction, such as paying fines and/or restitution, completing your jail time and probationary requirements. 

Furthermore, you cannot have been charged with another crime. Though most misdemeanors, infractions and some felonies can be expunged, not all crimes are eligible. Learn more about which crimes may and may not be eligible for expungement on our “Who We Help” page

How to Expunge Your Record in California

Filing With an Experienced Attorney

Unlike many states, California allows most infractions and misdemeanors to be expunged, as it has some of the most liberal expungement laws in the country. To obtain expungement for a criminal conviction in the State of California, you must first obtain a copy of your criminal record. Then complete and file your petition (Form CR-180) with the court in the county in which you were convicted. Once your petition is filed, you may be required to attend a hearing (this is typically not necessary though). At the hearing, the judge will decide whether to approve your petition or deny it.

How Long Does the Process Take?

There is not a set time-frame associated with having your criminal record expunged. In some cases, it can happen within weeks, and in others, it may take months. Each case will have its own unique set of circumstances. At ExpungeAmerica, we know time is of the essence. We file cases usually within 24 hours of signing up, and we know how to expedite the process. Expungements usually take around 8 weeks, at ExpungeAmerica, we typically get results in 6 weeks. 

We Make Expunging Your Record Easier and Faster!

The process of expungement on your own can be time-consuming and confusing. This can be especially true without the help of an expungement attorney. We make expungements easy, quick, and stress-free. Fill out our online form and allow our expungement attorneys to do the work for you. 

What Happens Next?

After expungement, you will no longer have a conviction on your record. Instead, your case will show that it has been dismissed. You will not have to admit to being convicted of a crime when filling out applications for employment, housing, or loans. An expungement attorney can help to ensure that your updated information is sent to the correct reporting agencies. 

Will Records Still Show Up in a Background Check?

There will still be a record of your arrest (if applicable) and the charge that was brought against you. However, it will no longer show that you were convicted of a crime. It can take a few months for your records to be updated with all government agencies after your expungement has been approved. 

Why Hire ExpungeAmerica for Help?

An experienced expungement lawyer can help ensure that you are eligible for expungement, your petition is filed correctly, as well as potentially decrease the amount of time that it will take to have a hearing and get an approval. 

We only accept cases that we are confident that we can get expunged. This is why we offer our unprecedented money-back guarantee. Check out other reasons to work with ExpungeAmerica for an expungement in California.