Seal Your Criminal Records

 SEAL RECORD OF YOUR DWI ARREST & CONVICTION

Has Your DWI Come Back To Haunt You?

A DWI conviction can have a serious impact on your employment and social standing.  The public can easily access and view records relating to your arrest and prosecution. A single one-time mistake can cause others to unfairly judge you for the rest of your life.  Even if your case was dismissed or you were found not guilty, records of the arrest and charge remain a matter of public record.  

 In some circumstances, the law may allow you to SEAL these records from public access (Nondisclosure) or perhaps even DESTROY the records all together (Expunction).  Think of the freedom and peace of mind you would enjoy if record of your DWI arrest or conviction was no longer a matter of public record.  Contact our office to find out if your DWI arrest or conviction is eligible for expunction or nondisclosure.

 Nondisclosure

 An Order of Nondisclosure prohibits public disclosure of criminal history record information.  The law has recently been expanded to allow nondisclosure in certain circumstances for first-time DWI offenders.

 A person who obtains an order of nondisclosure may legally deny the arrest, prosecution and subsequent proceedings unless it is being used against him in a subsequent criminal prosecution.  Additionally, all records relating to the offense will be sealed from public access.  

A DWI conviction is eligible for nondisclosure if it falls into one of two categories:

 A. DWI Community Supervision

  1. Person successfully completes a term of community supervision.
  2. The person is not convicted of an offense under 49.04 (d) which alleges a BAC greater than or equal to 0.15.
  3. The person must not have any prior convictions or deferred adjudications for any offense other than a fine-only traffic offense.
  4. The person must show that the order is in the best interest of justice.
  5. A person is ineligible if the State proves that the offense resulted in a motor vehicle accident involving another person.
  6. A waiting period of two years applies if the person had an ignition interlock for at least six months as a condition of community supervision.  Otherwise, the waiting period is five years.

B. DWI Conviction – No Community Supervision

  1. The person is not convicted of an offense under 49.04 (d) which alleges a BAC greater than or equal to 0.15.
  2. The person must not have any prior convictions or deferred adjudications for any offense other than a fine-only traffic offense.
  3. All fine, court costs and restitution have been fully paid
  4. The person must show that the order is in the best interest of justice.
  5. A person is ineligible if the State proves that the offense resulted in a motor vehicle accident involving another person.
  6. A waiting period of three years applies if the person complied with a condition of his sentence that required had an ignition interlock for at least six months.   as a condition of community supervision. Otherwise, the waiting period is five years.

Even if an order of nondisclosure is issued, the information remains available to criminal justice agencies for criminal justice and regulatory licensing purposes as well as any of the 32 agencies listed in Texas Gov’t Code 411.0765 and 411.081(j).

Expunction

 Expunction is a process by which all records relating to an arrest and prosecution are destroyed pursuant to a court order.  You are eligible to expunge your DWI if your case was resolved in one  of the following manners:

  1. Dismissal without court-ordered probation and expiration of the statute of limitations;
  2. Acquittal/Not Guilty verdict at trial;
  3. PreTrial Intervention agreement successfully completed.

When expunction is granted, the release, maintenance, dissemination or use of expunged records for any person is prohibited.  The person may deny the occurrence of arrest and expunction order.  If questioned under oath, the person may state only that the matter has been expunged.  The knowing release, dissemination of expunged records or knowing failure to return or disseminate expunged records is a Class B misdemeanor.