Where must an expungement be filed?

An expungement must be filed in court where that person was charged or found guilty of the offense seeking to be expunged.

What can be expunged?

Arrest records, criminal convictions, and corresponding administrative hearings.

How many convictions can I seek to have expunged?

A person can have one DWI conviction expunged under §610.130 RSMo in a lifetime. Under §610.140 RSMo, a person may not be granted more than two expungements for misdemeanor offenses or ordinance violations that have an authorized term of imprisonment; and not more than one felony offense. Under §610.140 RSMo, a person may be granted an expungement for any number of infractions. If the offenses, violations, or infractions were charged as counts in the same indictment or information or were committed as part of the same course of criminal conduct, the person may include all the related offenses, violation, and infractions in the petition, regardless of the limits, and the petition shall only count as a petition for expungement of the highest level violation or offense contained in the petition for the purpose of determining future eligibility.

Are certain offenses not eligible for expungement?

Yes, there are numerous offenses which are categorically banned from being eligible for an expungement.

Who must be named as a defendant in an expungement action?

The petition in an expungement actions shall name as defendants all law enforcement agencies, courts, prosecuting or circuit attorneys, municipal prosecuting attorneys, central state repositories of criminal records, or others who the petitioner had reason to believe may possess records subject to expungement. A court’s order of expungement shall not affect any person or entity not named by the petitioner in the action.

Can the defendants object to a request for expungement?

Yes, any party named as a defendant in an expungement action may file and objection within 30 days of receiving notice of the action has been filed.

What happens if an expungement order is granted?

A copy of the order of expungement shall be provided to the petitioner and each entity possessing records subject to the order, and, upon receipt of the order, each entity shall close any record in its possession relating to any offense, violation, or infraction listed in the petition, in the manner established by section 610.120. The records and files maintained in any administrative or court proceeding in a municipal, associate, or circuit court for any offense, infraction, or violation ordered expunged under this section shall be confidential and only available to the parties or by order of the court for good cause shown. The central repository shall request the Federal Bureau of Investigation to expunge the records from its files.

What does an expungement mean for me?

The effect of an expungement order shall be to restore a person to the status he or she occupied prior to arrest, plea, trial, or conviction as if such events had never taken place.

Do I have to disclose my previous conviction or expungement if asked?

No person as to whom such an order has been entered shall be held thereafter under any provision of law to be guilty of perjury or otherwise giving false state by reason of his or her failure to recite such arrests, pleas, trial, convictions, or expungement in response to an inquiry make of him or her. EXCEPT, the petitioner shall disclose the expunged offense, violation or infraction to any court when asked or upon being charged with any subsequent offense, violation or infraction.

If I am convicted of a future crime, can my expunged offense be considered in determining the sentence to be imposed?

Yes. The expunged offense, violation, or infraction may be considered a prior offense in determining a sentence to be imposed for any subsequent offense that the person is found guilty of committing.

Does a person who was granted an expungement ever have to disclose an expunged offense, violation, or infraction on an application?

Yes. There are still a limited number of situations where a person would have to disclose their expunged offenses or offenses on an application. These include applications for:
A license, certificate, or permit issued by the state to practice such individual’s profession;
– Any gaming license under Chapter 313 of the Missouri Revised Statutes
– Firearm permits issued under Chapter 571 or the Missouri Revised Statues;
– Any paid or unpaid employment with an entity licensed under the Missouri Gaming Commission;
– Employment with any federally insured bank or savings institution or credit union or an affiliate of such institution or credit union for purpose of compliance with 12 U.S.C. Section 1829 and 12 U.S.C. Section 1785;
– Employment with an entity engaged in the business of insurance or any insurer for the purpose of complying with 18 U.S.C. Section 1033, 18 U.S.C. Section 1034, or other similar law with requires an employer engaged in the business of insurance to exclude applicants with certain criminal convictions from employment; or
– Employment with an employer that is required to exclude applicants with certain criminal convictions due to federal or state law, including corresponding rules and regulations.
Unless a prospective job falls within one of the categories listed above, a person does not have to list their expunged offense, violation or infraction on a job application.

How will I know if a job application requires me to disclose my expunged offense?

An employer must notify any applicant of the requirements to disclose expunged offenses under §610.140 RSMo. If the applicant is not notified, they are not under any obligation to disclose the expunged offense.

What does it mean if I am required to disclose my expunged offense, violation or infraction?

An expunged offense, violation or infraction shall not be grounds for automatic disqualification of an applicant, but may be a factor for denying employment, or a professional license, certificate, or permit.

What should I answer if an employer inquires into whether I have even been convicted of a crime after receiving an expungement?

A person who has been granted an expungement of records pertaining to a misdemeanor or felony offense, an ordinance violation, or an infraction may answer “NO” to an employer’s inquiry into whether the person have ever been convicted of a crime. However, if the employer is REQUIRED to exclude applicants with certain criminal conviction from employment due to federal or state law, a person must answer affirmatively.

Can my expunged records be subsequently used by law enforcement entities?

Yes. An expungement may not limit or impair law enforcement’s subsequent use of any record expunged under this section of any arrests or findings of guilt by a law enforcement agency, criminal justice agency, prosecuting attorney, circuit attorney, or municipal prosecuting attorney, including its use as a prior offense, violation, or infraction.

How long must I wait before I can be eligible for a DWI expungement?

10 years since the date of the DWI plea or conviction.

How long must I wait before I can be eligible for the expungement of a felony conviction?

3 years must have passed since the Petitioner completed the conditions of his/her sentence for a felony conviction, including the payment of fines and restitution.

How long must I wait before I can be eligible for the expungement of a misdemeanor conviction?

1 year must have passed since the Petitioner completed the conditions of his/her sentence for a felony conviction, including the payment of fines and restitution.