A criminal arrest record could hold you back and cause hardship when looking for employment; however, you may qualify for record expungement.

The Texas Constitution and Statutes explains that while the state does not allow the expungement of convictions in most cases, it is possible to clear your arrest history. The circumstances of your arrest and what happens following it will determine if you have a right to expunction.

Did not go to trial

If you face criminal charges but the prosecutor never brings them to court, then you also may remove the associated arrest from your criminal record. Typically, you will need to wait a certain amount of time based on the potential charge you face. For example, if it is a felony, then you have to wait three years, but if it is a Class C misdemeanor, you only have to wait 180 days after the arrest to request expungement. In addition, you need a state attorney to testify that there is no ongoing investigation or prosecution for which the state needs your arrest records.

Did go to trial

If your arrest leads to a court trial but it ends with an acquittal, then you may clear your record. It is also possible to have a conviction but also erase your arrest records, but it requires that you later receive a pardon on the basis of your innocence.

In addition, if the arrest file occurred at the time of another charge and the court did convict you on that charge, then you cannot expunge the arrest.

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