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New York’s “Second Chance Law” Allows Non-Violent Felony and Misdemeanor Sealing

For years in New York, a criminal conviction could be indefinitely attached to a person’s identity, no matter the pain and effort it took for them to move past that part of their lives. The State Legislature has recently made amendments to the law, however, to allow criminal record sealing in New York. This gives those seeking to live normal lives a better chance at turning over a new leaf.

Under this new law, many non-violent felonies and most misdemeanors are eligible for sealing after a period of ten years — meaning these records will not be made available to the public, nor will they be visible on civil background checks.  Although the new law will not permanently expunge or completely erase criminal records (since sealing and expungement are different legal concepts and processes), criminal record sealing can help ensure that employers, landlords, loan officers and many others will be unable to view the contents of your file or view your criminal record without a court order.

NY Sealing Law’s Rick Collins, Phil Nash, and their team of dedicated attorneys can help New Yorkers like you clear your record and start living your life free of social barriers and stigma.

The Legal Counsel You Can Trust

Mr. Collins’ focus in New York Record Sealing Law was shaped by his advocacy, which contributed immensely to the law’s passage in the first place. His familiarity with this complex legal procedure is unmatched, and a consultation with Mr. Collins and his team provides plenty of hope for people barred from proper employment, housing, and even social circles due to old convictions.

Seal Records Upon Completing Drug Treatment

The firm also represents individuals with drug-related convictions (but have completed drug treatment programs) to help them seal their records. NY Sealing Law’s legal counsel can help determine your eligibility and guide you on the best course of legal action to pursue.

NY Sealing Law’s mission is to help rehabilitated individuals make the most of their second chances; to help them re-integrate into society without the stigma of criminal convictions and the harm it causes to one’s self-worth. If you are a resident of New York and think you are a candidate for the expungement of your criminal record, whether it be a DUI charge or drug related charge, then let us help you move forward today. Get in touch with Rick Collins and his team and start your journey to a new lease on life today.

Criminal Record Sealing vs. Expungement

The Differences Between Expunging and Sealing a Criminal Record … and How to Find Out if You are Eligible to Seal Your Record in New York

What does it mean to EXPUNGE a criminal record?

Expungement of a criminal record means the conviction is completely erased and cannot be resurrected. The law treats an expunged record as if the conviction never happened. In a state that allows a record to be expunged, a person with an expunged record can say they have never been convicted of a crime. When a record is expunged, it cannot be used as the basis for an enhancement under the law if there is a new conviction. An expunged record, at least in theory, should not be available to anyone, even law enforcement authorities. Only a judge can order that a criminal record be expunged.

What does it mean to SEAL a criminal record?

Sealing a criminal record means that the record is sealed and cannot be made available to the public. The conviction still exists, but it will not be reported as part of a background check for the purposes of employment, housing, education and other important purposes. A person with a sealed record can say they have never been convicted of a crime. However, a sealed record may still be used as the basis for an enhancement under the law if there is a new conviction. A sealed record is also accessible to law enforcement and certain other authorities, such as firearm licensing departments. Only a judge can order that a criminal record be sealed.

New York State does NOT permit criminal records to be expunged. New York only recently allowed for broad criminal record sealing of many non-violent felony and misdemeanor criminal records, including drug possession and driving while intoxicated (DWI/DUI) convictions, under CPL Section 160.59.