Expunging or Sealing Your Record in Illinois


If you have a criminal offense in your past, even if you were not convicted of the crime, it can continue to appear on your criminal record. The presence of a criminal record can negatively impact your ability to secure a professional license, housing, employment, and attend the college of your choice. However, you might be eligible to have that offense expunged from your criminal record or sealed from public view. Attorney Daniel Johnson has experience in obtaining expungements and sealings, and he is available to assist you with obtaining a second chance. Contact Attorney Daniel Johnson at (773) 864-9281 for a free consultation.


An expungement removes that offense from your criminal record. If a judge grants your expungement petition and orders the Illinois State Police to “expunge” your record, law enforcement agencies and courts will erase and destroy the records. While you can legally deny being convicted if you were never convicted of a crime, an individual conducting a background check on you can still see the arrest. An expungement would destroy the record so that it no longer exists.

The following dispositions may be eligible to be expunged:
  • Finding of Not Guilty
  • Stricken Off with Leave to Reinstate
  • Non-Suit
  • Noelle Prosequi
  • Finding of No Probable Cause
  • Supervision (excluding DUI, Reckless Driving if you were 25 years old or older at the time, and Sex Offenses involving minors)
  • 710-1410 Probation*
  • Second Chance Probation*
  • TASC Probation*
  • Offender Initiative Program*

*If terminated satisfactory. 


If you are not eligible to have your criminal record expunged, you may still be able to have the criminal charges sealed from public view. Illinois law permits individuals to have most convictions sealed. Sealed records are closed and restricted from public access, but they are not permanently destroyed. All sealed records can be accessed by law enforcement, including police, courts, prosecutors, and the Department of Corrections. Also, sealed felony records can be accessed by any employer that requires fingerprints for employment. Some of these employers include the fire department, law enforcement agencies, schools, state and local government agencies, financial institutions, healthcare providers, and park districts.

Most misdemeanor and felony convictions can be sealed in Illinois except the following:
  • Driving Under the Influence
  • Reckless Driving (unless under 25 years of age at the time of the offense and no other convictions for DUI or reckless driving).
  • Domestic Battery
  • Violation of an Order of Protection
  • Violation of a Civil No-Contact Order
  • Violation of a Stalking No-Contact Order
  • Soliciting a Prostitute or Patronizing a Prostitute
  • Felony conviction of Public Indecency
  • Any other misdemeanor offense listed under Article 11 of the Criminal Code
  • Any offense that requires registration under the Sex Offender Registration Act
  • Dog Fighting
  • Class A misdemeanors under the Human Care for Animals Act

If you were charged/convicted of multiple crimes, even if some are not eligible for expungement or sealing, you could still expunge or seal the eligible charges.

How long does a Record Sealing or Expungement take?
The courts work on sealings and expungements in the order in which they are received. The prosecutor and the police departments have 60 days to object after the petition is filed. After those 60 days have passed, then the judge will decide or schedule a hearing.

Typically, a record sealing or expungement in Illinois takes an average of four to five months. However, some requests for expungement or sealing can take more or less time, depending on the particular facts of the case. Other factors that can delay approval are whether the state is agreeing or objecting, how busy the court is at that time, the age of the case, and the availability of records.

Attorney Daniel Johnson Is Here for You
The process of requesting and following through with expungement or sealing of your criminal record can be complicated and time-consuming. A knowledgeable criminal defense attorney such as Attorney Daniel Johnson can determine whether you are eligible to have your records expunged or sealed. If you are eligible, Daniel will complete the required documents and represent you in court as needed. Don’t let your past define you. Contact Attorney Daniel Johnson today at (773) 864-9281 for a free consultation. 

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