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What is an "Expungement" in California?

Posted by Thomas "Doug" Allen | Jul 29, 2014 | 0 Comments

A California expungement is a legal process that petitions the Court to review a conviction to determine:

  1. If probation was successfully completed, or, if no probation was granted, a year has passed since the conviction;
  2. That all fines, restitution and reimbursement ordered by the court has been paid;
  3. That the petitioner is not now on probation for another offense;
  4. That the petitioner has no new pending cases;

The Court then allows the petitioner to withdraw their plea or finding of guilt, enters a "not guilty" plea, and orders the case dismissed. This means you can answer "No" to a question regarding convictions under many circumstances.

The Expungement law is somewhat complex in certain areas, but expungement of a record is something that should be done by anyone with even a minor history of arrest or conviction.

Even if probation violations occurred, a case can in some circumstances still be expunged.

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About the Author

Thomas "Doug" Allen

Doug has practiced law in California for the past 25 years, and has represented clients charged with offenses ranging from possession of an open container of alcohol to first degree murder. He has extensive courtroom and trial experience and has personally litigated more than 3500 expungement cases all over the state of California.


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We are a small firm that emphasizes personal attention, not a high volume of cases. Our fees are reasonable and competitive; you usually do not need to appear in court. Call 800 495 2819 or contact us through our site for a FREE Attorney consultation. We ONLY practice California Expungement Law, and have handled more than 4000 California expungement cases over the past 25 years.