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How Long Will a Juvenile Offense Stay on My Record?

Teenagers, minors, and young adults often don't comprehend the consequences of their criminal actions. The criminal justice system that juveniles face when accused of a crime is not the same as the one adults face when they are arrested. Although the Juvenile Justice system is supposed to rehabilitate juvenile offenders, the penalties associated with juvenile crimes can have a significant impact on their lives long after they have served their sentence. In this blog, we talk about how long a juvenile offense will stay on your record.

What Juvenile Offenses Stay on My Criminal Record?

Unfortunately, the arrests and convictions placed on a juvenile's criminal record are not automatically removed when the juvenile becomes an adult. In fact, many years can go by and the juvenile offense might still remain on your record. However, since the Juvenile Justice System does not want to entirely ruin a minor's reputation, expungement can be used to remove juvenile offenses from your criminal record. In addition to expungement, a judge can also order for your records to be sealed. Sealing your records will prevent the offenses that cannot be expunged from being seen by parties who are interested in your criminal background.

It is important to note that each of your convictions or arrests is bound to a one-expungement attempt rule. This means that if you try to file for an expungement and it ends up being denied, it cannot ever be expunged in the future. Furthermore, the following violent crimes and sex crimes cannot be expunged from your record:

  • Animal Cruelty
  • Unlawful Use or Possession of a Firearm
  • Assault
  • Battery
  • Sexual Misconduct
  • Any Crime that Requires You to Register as a Sex Offender

If your juvenile offense was severe and tried in adult court, in is unlikely that it can be expunged. Offenses like grand theft, rape, or murder are not eligible for expungement, even if you were not convicted.

Who Can See My Juvenile Record?

Employers, banks, landlords, and educational institutions are allowed to ask if you have ever been convicted of a crime when reviewing your application or discussing opportunities regarding that organization. If you have a juvenile conviction, you will need to inform these entities. However, make sure you specify that your conviction was for a juvenile offense.

Do you have more questions about juvenile offenses or expungement? Contact our Columbia team of juvenile crimes attorneys to find out how we can help you today.