Types of Records which can be Sealed or Expunged in Colorado:
People often ask what types of records can be sealed or expunged in Colorado. First, the record must originate in a Colorado jurisdiction. Second, the record must be of a certain type to qualify, which we describe below. It is important to note that the age of the offense is only relevant in very narrow circumstances, there is currently no provision in Colorado that allows the sealing of a conviction based upon age alone. For the most part, as of the writing of this post, the following categories of records do qualify to petition the Court for a record sealing:
- Adult Criminal Justice records: records pertaining to adult (over 18 years of age or not brought before a juvenile court) arrests, investigations, criminal court cases are adult criminal justice records. Many restrictions apply to having such records sealed. Much of our website is dedicated to information regarding sealing these types of records. Click to visit our More information about sealing or expunging adult criminal justice records
- Underage Drinking and Driving Conviction: a conviction for underage drinking and driving with a BAC (blood alcohol content) of greater than .02 but no more than .05 is a “UDD” conviction. State law allows sealing of such convictions but only under certain conditions. Please call for more information. 303-459-7898.
- Juvenile records: adjudication records of juvenile courts can also be sealed or expunged. Such records are those pertaining to incidents that occurred before the person in interest reached the age of 18 and no charges were brought in an adult criminal court. Please call for more information.
- Drug Convictions: a drug conviction is a plea of guilty or no contest and the case results in a conviction ad was not dismissed or deferred. If you were sentenced without leave to later withdraw your plea or have the case dismissed if you complied with certain conditions, it is likely a conviction. There are multiple laws related to sealing convictions for controlled substances. We have a page with some more information regarding convictions for possession of controlled substances. Please call for more information if you have an old conviction for drugs which you would like to consider having sealed.
- DNA evidence collected by law enforcement or prosecution can be expunged. If the DNA evidence was collected and you weren’t charged, weren’t convicted, were convicted of a crime other than a felony or the charges were dismissed, the DNA records likely can be expunged. Please call us at 303-459-7898 to make further inquiry regarding expunging DNA evidence.
- Criminal conviction for posting an intimate photograph of a person on the internet: If you were convicted of posting a private image for harassment in violation of section 18-7-107, C.R.S., or posting a private image for pecuniary gain in violation of section 18-7-108, C.R.S., but you completed the sentence, including payment of the fine, and have not been convicted of another criminal offense for at least five years after the date you completed your sentence, you may petition the district court for the sealing of the conviction records, except for basic identifying information.
- Conviction for certain offenses committed by victims of human trafficking: A defendant who establishes by a preponderance of the evidence that, at the time he or she committed the offense, he or she had been trafficked by another person, may petition the district court of the district in which any conviction records pertaining to the defendant’s conviction for prostitution, soliciting for prostitution, keeping a place of prostitution, public indecency, or any corresponding municipal code or ordinance are located for the sealing of the conviction records, except for basic identifying information.
- Pardons: you may ask the governor for a pardon. This can be a final resort if you do not qualify under any other provision of the law, the governor can forgive the crime. These are not often granted. We have pursued pardons before, it helps very much to have a lawyer who knows the process. Please call our office for more information.
If my record does qualify?
If the record you want sealed fits within one of the above categories, then you likely qualify to proceed with filing a petition to have the record sealed. In certain instances, the Court does not have a choice but to grant the petition and the District Attorney does not have an objection that could be made. In other instances, the Court may require you to attend a hearing where the inquiry will be whether or not the Court will order the record to be sealed. It is important that your attorney understands the nuanced differences between the types of qualifying records, so that you are appropriately prepared and are able to proceed effectively.
Our Attorneys Can Help!
Our Lawyers are familiar with background records seal law and procedure. We can evaluate your background check and we can help you mitigate the damage that may be caused by your record. In many cases, we can actually seal the records, as discussed above. We may also challenge the accuracy of the records if there has been an error which is affecting your background check or report negatively.
About the Author:
Eric Wessels is a Colorado attorney who has extensive experience sealing Colorado criminal justice records.
CALL US AT: 303-459-7898
Wessels & Arsenault, LLC
8001 Arista Pl. #400
Broomfield, CO 80021