You made a mistake years ago. You committed a crime that makes it extremely difficult to purchase a home, apply for a well-paying job and therefore, move past the life-changing negative actions you took when you were young.

As you show remorse and rebuild your life after your conviction, you hold the right to receive all possible opportunities for the United States to view you as a law-abiding citizen. In Missouri, after new regulations took effect in March of 2018, various new criminal offenses joined the list of crimes eligible for expungement.

Applying for the expungement of your crime may prove to be the new beginning you have been waiting for, and your clean slate may leave you more prepared to succeed in society.

Changes in crime eligibility

The law, titled SB-588, describes the new inclusion of all misdemeanors—from failure to display a license plate on a motor vehicle to a DWI conviction—on the expungement eligibility list. Non-Class A felonies like voluntary manslaughter and first-degree burglary may also have the ability to be expunged.

Though more crimes gain eligibility, the following new credentials must prove true for the consideration of you request.

  • Your criminal record shows no previous felony expungement and a single misdemeanor expungement at maximum
  • Pending charges do not exist on your record
  • Your current behavior shows that you are not a threat to public safety
  • The expungement of your crime proves consistent with public welfare

Missouri’s law change supports citizens’ hope in regaining control of their lives without the burden of a tarnished record.

A decrease in the waiting period

The removal of a crime from your record requires years of waiting. Up until government enacted the new regulations, the waiting period to file for expungement proved lengthy.

Those convicted of felonies used to wait 20 years to file in Missouri, and now they wait 7 years. Those who faced misdemeanor charges waited 10 years, and now they wait 3 years.

A crime wiped from your criminal record may give you peace of mind. In the years following your conviction, you waited for expungement eligibility and began restructuring your life after heavy fines or a prison sentence. Assuming your misconduct proves eligible in court, you have the unique opportunity to start over and continue to be a respectable member of society.