Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Early Expungement Factors in NJ

Expungement is a means of sealing criminal records for those who made an error in judgment. In order to qualify for an expungement, there is a waiting period, at least 5 years, which must pass without the commission of further crimes. New Jersey has relaxed the timeframe for expungement in certain circumstances. In considering early expungement, the court has set forth certain factors. The nature of the offense must be balanced against the petitioner’s overall character. At all times, it is the petitioner’s burden to prove they are deserving of an early expungement. The State is considered to have met it’s burden of proof at the petitioner’s trial. In the case of a petitioner previously convicted of dealing drugs, the New Jersey Supreme Court held that a lower court erred in considering factors the Legislature did not include in the carefully drafted statute. Although the nature of the drugs sold could not be considered, the number of times drugs were sold, whether they were sold to minors and weather there were weapons involved could be considered. This blog is for informational purposes only and in no way intended to replace the advice of an attorney regarding your specific matter. If you have a criminal record that is hindering your ability to obtain employment, the education you want or otherwise negatively impacting your life, you should consult an experienced criminal law attorney immediately in order to protect your rights. For more information on expungements or other criminal law matters, including municipal court matters, in New Jersey visit

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