How Can I Get a Felony Charge Removed from My Record in Michigan?
Do you have a felony conviction that you would like removed from your record? Are you wondering if it is even possible to have a conviction expunged? The process of setting aside a conviction, also known as an expungement, can make a big difference in your life. By having the conviction set aside, it allows you to mark that you have not been convicted of a crime opening up additional opportunities for you that may not exist with the conviction on your record.
Can you get a felony removed from your record?
Under Michigan law, you may be eligible to have one felony charge set aside or expunged from your record. There are some guidelines which must be met in order for the conviction to be considered for an expungement. You must meet the following requirements before submitting your application:
Wait five years after your conviction or the completion of your sentence
before being considered.
- The waiting period starts after you have been discharged from parole, probation or completed a jail sentence.
- Anyone convicted of a prostitution offense can have the waiting period waived if they can prove the charge was the result of human trafficking.
- Not have more than 1 felony and not more than 2 misdemeanor convictions on your record before petitioning the court.
No other adult convictions have been set aside from your record. In Michigan, you are only allowed to have one adult conviction expunged from your record.
The law changed in 2015, so if you have a conviction prior to this date then the guidelines are slightly different. If you have an older conviction on your record, our criminal defense team at Grewal Law can answer your questions regarding a felony expungement.
How much does it cost to have a felony expunged?
The cost of hiring a criminal attorney to handle your case can vary. The average starts around $1,000 and goes up as high as $2,500. At Grewal Law, we are upfront with our costs and will provide you with a no-obligation quote in your case before getting started on your case.
How do I expunge my record?
In order to have a conviction expunged from your record, you must first file a motion with the court where you were convicted. As part of the materials submitted to the court, you will be required to have the following items:
- A certified record of your conviction which must be obtained from the court.
- Two complete sets of fingerprints.
- A completed “Application to Set Aside Conviction” application
Once your materials are reviewed by the court you will be given a hearing date. Some districts in the state require you to submit additional paperwork when you appear at your hearing. In addition, you will be required to send copies of paperwork to several state agencies. These include the Michigan State Police, the Michigan Attorney General, and the county prosecutor. It is imperative all of the paperwork is done correctly in order to improve your chances of getting the conviction set aside.
Before your hearing is able to take place, the Michigan State Police will need to submit a report to the court letting them know if you have any pending charges. The reason the report is required is to ensure you are past the five-year waiting period regarding a conviction which is required to submit a request for expungement.
Even though you can appear on your own at the hearing, it is important to have legal counsel to represent you when appearing in court. Expungement of a prior conviction is discretionary meaning the court does not have to grant it – that is why it is helpful to have an attorney help present your case to the judge. In addition, the prosecutor or a representative from the Attorney General’s office will appear at your hearing, so you should have a lawyer ready to respond to any challenges they may pose to your application. As your attorney we will be by your side throughout the entire process. We will help you with all of the documentation required to have your expungement considered by the court and will be there to represent you at your hearing.
How long does it take to get a criminal record expunged?
The process to have an Application to Set Aside Conviction can take several months to make its way through the court system. Delays may occur while the court is waiting to receive a report from the Michigan State of Police which can push your hearing date later than anticipated. Once your expungement has been granted by the court you will want to ensure the court sends copies of the order to all of the agencies with record of your conviction. On average it can take a month or more to have your conviction removed from the state’s Internet Criminal History Access Tool.
What felonies can be expunged?
Under state law most felonies can be expunged as long as they are not convictions related to the following offenses:
- Offense punishable by life in prison
- Criminal Sexual Conduct with some exceptions for Criminal Sexual Conduct of the 4th Degree convictions prior to January 12, 2015
- Traffic offenses such as drinking and driving
- Child Abuse in the second degree, Child Abuse in the Presence of Another Child
- Domestic Violence conviction if the person has a previous misdemeanor conviction for domestic violence
- Human trafficking violations
Can you get a federal felony conviction expunged?
Unlike in the State of Michigan, there are no federal laws regarding having the courts issue expungement orders. However, you may be eligible to apply for a Presidential Pardon. In order to submit a pardon, you must apply through the Office of the Pardon Attorney through the United States Department of Justice. This can be a complicated process which has a number of its own requirements which an experienced criminal defense attorney can help you understand.
Can an expunged record be found?
When a conviction is expunged from your record it will not be publicly available for anyone to find. The conviction will still be on file with the court system and the Michigan State Police, but these files are not public. The expunged crime will only be considered if you end up getting convicted of another crime in the future or if you apply to have another conviction set aside. The courts will be able to find the file in the nonpublic record and may take it under consideration when weighing your other case.If you are considering an application to have a felony conviction set aside from your record contact our experienced legal team today. Our attorneys are ready to help you get your life back by having a charge expunged from your record. Call us for your free consultation at (888) 211-5798.