A law, approved by lawmakers and Governor Charlie Baker earlier this year, expands the public’s right to control the narrative of their own lives and to no longer be bound by government records. People have been able to seal records for years, but the new law goes much further.
We are not talking about sealing your record. We are talking about making it disappear, expunged, gone.
According to the state Probation Department, which will play a key role under the new law, the measure does not specify what criminal charges qualify for expungment. Instead, the law clearly spells out what will remain part of a personal history.
■ A person’s tie to the courts for a misdemeanor conviction, including probation, must have ended at least three years ago. For a felony, it must be at least 7 years in the past.
■ Crimes of violence, including sexual assaults against children and weapons-related charges or other types of dangerous weapons, do not qualify. Operating under the influence convictions will stay on the books.
■ Victims must not have been elderly, disabled, or a family member.
This is a BIG change in the existing laws. If you need help or advice on how this can be done. Contact our office.