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Maryland Expungement Law

We all know what can be considered a nuisance. Maybe it's that fly buzzing around your kitchen that you can't get rid of. Or perhaps it's your neighbor's dog who likes to bark at all hours of the night. Then there is the category of nuisance crimes. In Maryland nuisance crimes refer to offenses like panhandling, loitering or urination in a public place. Quite often juveniles are the ones who are arrested for these types of crimes, but there have been plenty of adults who have gotten into the same kind of trouble. You could laugh off these types of arrests. However, when it comes to a background check that tags you with an arrest record it is no laughing matter.

In Maryland, you have an option with regard to clearing up your "criminal past." This means filing for an expungement. If granted, the Maryland courts will order that all records pertaining to your arrest or trial will be taken down from any computer systems and not allowed to be viewed by the public. This will effectively clear up your record and provide you with a clean background check.

You will be granted an expungement if you were acquitted of the charges or your case was dismissed. Just because that happens doesn't mean the records vanish. You still have to file an official expungement request with the Maryland court system. The only time there is an automatic expungement of the records is if the arrest doesn't result in the filing of any charges. You can also ask for an expungement in Maryland if the crime you were involved in resulted in probation and not jail time or if a prosecutor decides not to move forward. If you are under the age of 21 and the case is sent to the Maryland juvenile court, then that might also be grounds for a quick expungement. The only method of obtaining an expungement after you've been convicted and served time is with a pardon from the Maryland governor.

Maryland law states that you must wait three years from the time your cased was adjudicated until you can file for an expungement. There are certain minor DUI offenses which permit you to have your records expunged. The distinction in Maryland is that you will need to file the appropriate forms with each individual state agency that might have a record of your arrest. This means an application with the police, with the court system and with the motor vehicle administration (if that applies). With all of those different forms and agencies, you could find yourself overwhelmed by the process. That's why you should seek out the advice of an experienced Maryland trial lawyer. They can help you make your way through the court system and handle your case in a manner that is acceptable to the judge.

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