The following is a video transcript.
Today, I will be discussing with you the process of obtaining an expunction in North Carolina.
Anyone who has been found not guilty of a criminal charge or had a criminal charge dismissed is eligible for an expunction in North Carolina, provided that they have not previously been convicted of a felony. In applying for an expunction, you or your attorney must file a petition with the court, giving detailed information about the case, including the file number, the charging agency, the nature of the charge, and so forth. The form can be found on the administrative office of the court’s website.
If you received a dismissal as part of the deferred prosecution, you will be required to pay a $175 processing fee. Otherwise, there is no fee.
The process of obtaining an expunction takes approximately six months to complete but once it is done, the court file will be destroyed, the records will be removed from the computer database, and the charging agency will be required to destroy its file as well.
One thing to keep in consideration is that under North Carolina law, if you have received an expunction and you are asked on a job application or student application whether you’ve ever been arrested, you can legally answer that question, “No.”
Sheriffs in North Carolina have vast discretion in approving concealed carry permits. Although a charge you were never convicted of should not affect your ability to obtain a permit, even charges that have been dismissed could give the Sheriff pause in approving your ability to obtain a permit, so it’s best when possible to expunge any charge that’s been dismissed or in which you’ve been found “not guilty.”
If you have any questions about the expunction process in North Carolina, call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak with your Independent Program Attorney today. Thank you.