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Expungement

What is an expungement?

An expungement is the setting a side of a conviction.  The legal implication of an expungement is to make a conviction nonpublic. 

What offenses can be expunged?

Any offense not excluded by statute. 

What offenses cannot be expunged?

The following convictions cannot be expunged:

  • Criminal Sexual Conduct
  • Felonies for which maximum penalty is for life
  • Convictions related to child sexually abusive material MCL 750.145(c)
  • Computer crimes under MCL 750.145(d)
  • Traffic Violations 

When is a person eligible for an expungement?

In general, after 5 years of a conviction or 5 years after the completion of probation or 5 years after a term of imprisonment (whichever is later) a person may be eligible. 

See MCL § 780.621
 

What convictions are eligible for an expungement?

A person who is convicted of not more than 2 misdemeanor offenses and no other felony or misdemeanor offenses may petition the convicting court or the convicting courts to set aside 1 or both of the misdemeanor convictions.  

A person who is convicted of not more than 1 felony offense and not more than 2 misdemeanor offenses may petition the convicting court to set aside the felony offense.   

A person who is convicted of a violation or an attempted violation of Criminal Sexual Conduct in the Fourth Degree before January 12, 2015 may petition the convicting court to set aside the conviction if the individual has not been convicted of another offense other than not more than 2 minor offenses. As used in this subdivision, “minor offense” means a misdemeanor or ordinance violation to which all of the following apply:
  • (i)  The maximum permissible term of imprisonment does not exceed 90 days.
  • (ii)  The maximum permissible fine is not more than $1,000.00.
  • (iii)  The person who committed the offense is not more than 21 years old.

See MCL § 780.621

What must be done to request an expungement?

The applicant must file this form to the convicting court. Read the directions very carefully. You must follow every instruction.  If the conviction happened at the 62-B District Court, then the filing must come to this court.  If the conviction occurred in another court, then the application must be filed in that other court.  Note:  Contact criminal division clerk at (616) 554-0711 prior to filing for hearing dates and times, prosecutor official information, etc.

What happens to the records?

The records become nonpublic, and cannot be accessed for general law enforcement or civil use. This nonpublic record shall be made available only to a court of competent jurisdiction, an agency of the judicial branch of state government, a law enforcement agency, a prosecuting attorney, the attorney general, or the governor upon request and only for certain purposes.

Can the records still be used?

Yes.  Set aside records may be considered in employment applications for law enforcement positions and licensing.  The records may also be used for sentencing where the prior conviction is applicable. 

See MCL § 780.623