Georgia expungement and record restriction laws were updated in 2013 in an effort to simplify and expand the criminal background restriction process in Georgia. However, the laws surrounding expungement of records are still confusing and cumbersome, often requiring professional help to ensure your record is as clear as it can be.
There are three main sources that commercial criminal record companies can pull from when performing a background check. They are:
- Your GCIC History: Your GCIC (Georgia Crime Information Center) history is your official criminal record kept by the State of Georgia. When a prosecutor or law enforcement runs your record, they are running your GCIC report. Prosecutors and law enforcement have all-access to your criminal record through GCIC and NCIC (National). Therefore, even if a charge is expunged or removed from your record, these agencies can still view the information.
- Jail Records: Arrest and booking information kept by jails in Georgia is the second big source of criminal record information. Until recently, jails were not obligated to seal or remove your arrest information, even if you had your case expunged. Now, there is a process for asking jails to remove these embarrassing mugshots and other arrest records.
- Court Records: Like jail records, court records used to be very difficult to have taken down or sealed. With courts and jailed on line, this makes the problem even worse, since a quick Google search will usually reveal court and jail records from your arrest. Now, there is a more firm process in place that allows for the removal of court records if your case has been expunged and your record has been restricted.
Georgia now allows more people to be eligible for expungement in addition to allowing more records to be restricted. However, not every case is eligible for expungement or record restriction. Our law firm cannot help you restrict your records if you:
- pled guilty or no contest to your charge
- were found guilty at trial
- on DUI cases (unless all charges dismissed)
However, if your case falls into one of the following categories, you should contact us to discuss how we can help you restrict or expunge your record:
- you completed a drug court program
- you were given pretrial diversion (PTD)
- your case was dead docketed
- all charges were nol prosed (not prosecuted)
- you were arrested on charges, but significant time has passed and you have no court date
- an agreement was reached with the prosecutor where charges would be dismissed
At Zeliff | Watson, we have helped hundreds clear their good name and restore their records. Give us a call or email us today if you fit into one of the 6 categories above. We will discuss your charges and their outcome with you and determine if we can help you have all traces of your record restricted for good. Evan Watson, our record restriction attorney, can be reached directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (770) 676-1340.