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Find out if you can expunge your criminal record

Having a criminal record expunged means that the record will be permanently destroyed so that it's no longer accessible by the court or any other state, municipal, or county agencies. It's not the same as having a record sealed.

Effective Monday, July 20, 2020, the Office of the Commissioner of Probation will be open to the public by appointment only.  If you wish to make an appointment or speak with someone regarding sealing or expunging a record or have questions for the Records Unit, please call (617) 557-0225.

Table of Contents

Who can expunge their record?

There are 2 different types of expungement you can qualify for.

Time-based expungement

To get a time-based expungement, the offense must be one that qualifies for expungement under G.L. c.276, § 100E-100U. For an offense to qualify, it must meet all of these criteria:

  • You have no more than 2 records (but multiple offenses arising out of the same incident are considered a single offense)
  • The offense didn't result in death or serious bodily injury nor was the offense committed with the intent to cause death or serious bodily injury
  • The offense wasn't committed while armed with or carrying a dangerous weapon
  • The offense wasn't committed against an elderly or disabled person
  • The offense isn't a sex offense, a sex offense involving a child, or sexually violent offense
  • The offense isn't Operating Under the Influence (of liquor or drugs)
  • The offense isn't a firearms violation or a violation for illegal sale of a firearm
  • The offense isn't a violation of any restraining or harassment prevention orders
  • The offense isn't an assault or assault and battery on a household member; and
  • The offense isn't a felony violation of G.L. c. 265
7 years how long you must wait after completing your sentence to request to expunge a felony
  • If the offense is a felony, you must have completed all parts of your sentence at least 7 years ago. If the offense is a misdemeanor, you must have completed all parts of your sentence at least 3 years ago.
Non-time-based expungement

Additionally, the law allows you to expunge a record if the record was created based on:

  • False use of your identification
  • Unauthorized use of your identity
  • Theft of your identity
  • Offense(s) that is/are no longer a crime (i.e. possessing small amounts of marijuana)
  • Errors by law enforcement
  • Errors by civilian or expert witness(es)
  • Errors by court employees
  • Fraud perpetrated upon the court

What are my rights after expunging my record?

After your record is expunged, you can't be found guilty of perjury or of giving a false statement by not acknowledging your record if anyone inquires about it. You can say that you have no record after expungement. 

Contact

Fax

(617) 727-8483

Address

1 Ashburton Place
Room 405
Boston, MA 02108
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