Anyone who has been charged of a crime knows how damaging a criminal record can be. A criminal history can affect your career, your family life, where you live, where you are able to travel and other facets of life.

If you have been charged of a crime in Texas, there may be options available that would keep your criminal record sealed from public view. At the law office of Prater & Ridley, we can help you determine if an expunction or petition for non-disclosure is a viable option given your situation. We can also help you through both the processes.

A person placed under custodial or noncustodial arrest for a felony or misdemeanor is eligible to have all files and records relating to the arrest expunged if:

  • Misdemeanors: If the person is released, the charge is no longer pending, there is no final conviction or community supervision and the appropriate waiting period has elapsed.
  • Felonies: Same requirements as above and indictment is not presented, or it is dismissed or quashed and the limitation period has expired.

Our co-founding attorney Patrick Ridley served as elected County Attorney for Bell County for 16 years.

Petitions For Non-Disclosure

A petition for non-disclosure prohibits criminal justice agencies from disclosing to the public criminal history record information related to certain offenses for which the offender was placed on deferred adjudication (Texas government code 411.081(d)).

If a person is placed on deferred adjudication community supervision for a felony or misdemeanor, that person may petition for non-disclosure (sealing the record) if:

  • The person has entered a plea of guilty or no contest
  • The judge has deferred the proceedings and placed the person on unadjudicated probation
  • The person has been successfully discharged from his or her community supervision with the proceedings having been dismissed
  • The person has not been charged with another offense (above Class C) since being discharged from community supervision.
  • The offense is not one excluded under Texas government code §411.081(e)(4).

To speak to a criminal defense attorney from our firm to learn more about expunctions and petitions for non-disclosure, please contact us online to schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys.