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Philadelphia Expungement Lawyer

In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, there are a number of different options available to anyone who has been arrested or convicted of a crime. In the event of an arrest, the records could potentially be sealed, or in other cases may be expunged if certain criteria is met. To learn more or see if your case applies, call and schedule a consultation with a Philadelphia expungement lawyer today. An experienced criminal lawyer in Philadelphia can provide legal guidance for your situation while advocating on your behalf throughout the process.

Availability of Arrest Records

In Philadelphia, arrest records can be made available in a public record system through the Philadelphia District Courts and are available both in an unsecured fashion online, as well as in a secured fashion at the Juanita Kidd Stout Criminal Justice Center in Center City, Philadelphia, located on the second floor of 1301 Filbert St. At this location, an individual can request a certified copy of their criminal extract usually for a small fee of $6 which is subject to change and a person is able to obtain a criminal record.

Additionally, individuals can, with the aid of a Philadelphia expungement attorney, obtain an official state police record which covers the entire state of Pennsylvania. Under those circumstances, an individual would seek out the assistance of an experienced Philadelphia criminal records attorney and obtain the general information needed by paying a small fee. The certification record would then be mailed or emailed directly to an attorney of the individual’s choosing.

Once the record is available, that is the individual’s official record, which is what an employer may or may not be able to see when the individual applies for a job. The record can also be seen by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation when the individual applies for a driver’s license. Other agencies, such as insurance companies and other monetary organizations such as banks, can have access to it when determining the person’s credit record. All of these important individual matters can be affected when a personal private criminal record and/or extract is obtained through Philadelphia in the state of Pennsylvania.

Can You Also Obtain Your Mug Shot?

Mug shots can only be obtained through the use of an expungement attorney in Philadelphia or through the use of a subpoena power to get the photos directly from the chief of police office in Center City, Philadelphia. The police maintain the mug shots and attempt to stay as up-to-date as possible with an individual often having more than one mug shot, given the person’s record. Unfortunately, the public does not have access independently to obtaining such mug shot.

Record Sealing and Expungement

Once an individual is an adult, all arrest records are available to anyone who has the prowess and the ability to subpoena and/or research them. In order to protect an individual with solely an arrest record and not a conviction, an individual should seek the advice of an experienced expungement lawyer in Philadelphia. Only then can a person be advised on whether a sealed or otherwise available record can be expunged or permanently removed.

In the event of an expungement, the state of Philadelphia will destroy an individual’s fingerprints that are taken by the police, biographical information, or any other information linking to a person to a past arrest that did not lead to a conviction. This could occur if a person ultimately obtained ARD (Admission, Review, or Dismissal) or is a first time offender. All other arrests that lead to convictions that are above a summary offense cannot be expunged in the entire state of Pennsylvania.

Difference Between Record Sealing and Expungement

In Philadelphia, as in the state of Pennsylvania as a whole, sealing a person’s record only applies to an individual when they are of juvenile age, which means under 18 years old or at an age prior to being certified as an adult by a criminal court. However, expungement, which is the destruction of any proof of an arrest, including fingerprints, biographical information, or other information the police would obtain at the time of arrest can be applied to both adult and juvenile cases.
However, an expungement can only be used for prior arrest that does not lead to convictions for misdemeanors or felonies. Should a person be convicted for a crime above a summary offense, the individual does not have the ability to expunge their record.
Additionally, juveniles that have been certified as adults with a conviction of a misdemeanor or felony also cannot attempt to have the record sealed or expunged. In those rare circumstances where convictions are often challenged, an individual can seek a difficult task of obtaining a pardon. 

Gubernatorial Pardons

The only remedy for past convictions, whether they are misdemeanors or felonies, is the obtainment of a gubernatorial pardon. This pardon, which may lead to the elimination of a person’s conviction record, could be obtained after seeking the advice of an experienced Philadelphia criminal defense pardon attorney and/or Philadelphia expungement attorney. However, pardons are very costly, time consuming, and can be very, very confusing, so seeking out the services of an experienced Philadelphia pardon attorney is the only way to attempt to remove a past conviction from an individual’s record.