Expungement Guide

Pennsylvania Expungement

Pennsylvania Expungement
Expungement in Pennsylvania is defined as the removal of information and leaving no indication or evidence of the information. This is usually applied to criminal records and arresting records. Some records may be maintained for subsequent probation or diversion programs or for identification in a future criminal investigation. In Pennsylvania criminal records can be expunged along with any following information. This information includes the dates of the arrests, notations from the arrests, any descriptions, indictments, formal information and charges, and dispositions.

Intelligence, treatment, and investigative information cannot be eliminated from a record, including psychological evaluations and medical information. Press releases and police blotters that report criminal information are not subject to expungement nor are indexes or documents as prepared by the court. Any public identifying information cannot be eliminated, including wanted ads, posters, executive clemency announcements, and fugitive announcements.

Pennsylvania Expungement Eligibility
Arrest records under Rule 320 are eligible for expungement under case dismissal. Individuals who are eligible for expungement include those who are of the age of seventy and are free from prosecution or arrest for ten years or more since his or her supervision or confinement release; those who are the information subject who have been dead for at least three years; those that are the information subject of a summary offense and have been free from conviction or arrest for five years or more; and those who have not received a disposition or have not had a disposition recorded after eighteen months of the arrest. Expungement can only happen after the court has received certification and authorization from the repository director. In these circumstances the court can order that non-conviction information be subject to expungement and those who are over the age of twenty-one with convictions in Section 6308 be subject to expungement. Section 6308 of Pennsylvania law cites the consumption of, the purchase of, the possession of, or the transportation of brewed beverages, liquor, or malt.

After a petition has been reviewed the court has the power to grant a criminal history record's expungement along with all information and records in relation to the conviction. Any cases relating to statutory sexual assault, rape, involuntary deviated sexual contact, indecent assault, indecent exposure, aggravated indecent assault, prostitution, sexual materials, sexual performances, and sexual assault are not eligible for expungement along with any individual on an ARD program for a victim under eighteen years of age.

Expungement Process
Individuals seeking expungement must petition the court in which he or she was convicted. Records under Rule 320 and those who have completed all ADR requirements may have their records automatically expunged. If charges are dismissed, the judge can also grant that the individual's records also be expunged during the court proceeding. If a Commonwealth attorney objects to this kind of judge ruling, the judge will file the objection with the dismissal record in thirty days. Copies of the dismissed charges and the objection will be served to the individual and his or her attorney. After the objection has successfully been filed, the judge will conduct a hearing.

See also:
Pennsylvania Misdemeanors External link (opens in new window)
Pennsylvania Felony External link (opens in new window)
Pennsylvania Gun Laws External link (opens in new window)