Overview Description

Records relating to a conviction of a qualifying crime, or crimes arising out of the same incident, can be expunged or sealed by the court 10 years after the sentence is completed, if the petitioner has no felony conviction in the previous seven years and no misdemeanor conviction in the past five years, and has paid all restitution. 13 V.S.A. § 7602(c).

Ineligible Category or Citation

See section 7601 for qualifying offenses.

Procedure General

The petition must be filed with the Criminal Division of the Superior Court. 13 V.S.A. § 7601. For the specific procedure, see 13 V.S.A. § 7601 et seq.

If the petition is denied, the person must wait two years before submitting a new petition, unless the court authorizes a shorter period. 13 V.S.A. § 7605.

Fees

$90. Part or all of the fee can be waived if the court finds that the person is unable to pay it. 32 V.S.A. § 1431(e),(h).

Effect

The petitioner is treated in all respects as if there was no arrest, conviction, or sentence. Employment and licensing applications cannot require information about expunged or sealed records. 13 V.S.A. §§ 7606(a), (b), 7607(a), (b).

The court can grant the petition and order the record expunged or sealed, depending on the age of the petitioner at the time of the offense and what remedy better serves the interests of justice. 13 V.S.A. § 7602(c). For the specific effects of sealing and expungement, see 13 V.S.A. §§ 7606, 7607.

Waiting Periods

The petition can be filed 10 years after sentence completion.

(non-prod server)