Expungement is authorized for 100 enumerated misdemeanors upon petition five years after completion of sentence, and for a handful of felonies (theft, burglary, drug-related) after seven years, if there have been no subsequent convictions, unless the subsequent conviction becomes eligible. In a few cases the eligibility period is 10 years. Relief is mandatory unless the prosecutor objects, in which case there must be a hearing to determine whether the person is a risk to public safety, and whether expungement would be in the best interest of justice. Expunged records may be opened only by court order and are destroyed after three years. In addition, “shielding” (sealing) is available for 12 enumerated non-violent misdemeanors after a 3-year waiting period. Expungement is also available for pardoned nonviolent first offenses, nuisance convictions after three years, and decriminalized conduct. Victims of human trafficking whose convictions are vacated may also seek expungement. A constitutional ballot initiative in November 2022 legalized personal use of cannabis, and resulted in legislation automating sealing of some minor convictions and reducing waiting periods for expungement of both possession and PWID cannabis offenses.
Arrest records not leading to charges are automatically expunged after 60 days; other non-conviction records may be expunged upon petition three years after disposition or completion of treatment, including charges dismissed following deferred adjudication (“probation before judgment”). Juvenile records may be sealed at any time upon a showing of “good cause,” and must be sealed when the person reaches the age of 21.