Expungment of a Juvenile Conviction

Juvenile Expungment Lawyers in Monmouth County

In Monmouth County, New Jersey, a juvenile’s past indiscretions will not always follow that juvenile throughout their life. The legal system in New Jersey provides juveniles with the opportunity to have their criminal record expunged either entirely or of a solitary act. This allows juveniles, who are soon to be adults, with the ability to pursue employment and educational endeavors without a criminal record hanging over their head. Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:52-4.1, juvenile crimes are treated as adult crimes and they must follow similar procedures as adults to get their record expunged.

How Does A Juvenile Get a Single Act of Delinquency Expunged in Monmouth County?

A single act of delinquency can be expunged following a waiting period, which will vary depending on the degree of the offense. A juvenile convicted of a first, second, third or fourth degree crime is required to wait ten (10) years before the act of delinquency may be expunged. If the the act of delinquency involved a conviction for a disorderly persons offense or petty disorderly persons offense, then the juvenile must wait five (5) years before they are allowed to file a request for expungement. As mentioned above, juvenile expungement procedures are similar to those of adults. Accordingly, like an adult, a juvenile cannot petition the court for an expungement an an individual act of delinquency if the juvenile has been convicted of a prior or subsequent indictable offense. This illustrates how the purpose of expungements is to provide the proverbial “get out of jail free card” to juveniles who are not of the habit of committing multiple crimes.

How Does a Juvenile Get an Entire Record Expunged in NJ?

Having an entire record expunged is slightly more difficult than having a single incident expunged. To qualify for an expungement of juveniles entire record, all the following criteria must be satisfied:

  1. Must be at least 5 years since the final discharge of the person from legal custody or from the most recent criminal judgment;
  2. Must be at least 5 years since he/she was convicted of a first, second, third or fourth degree crime, disorderly persons offense or petty disorderly persons offense;
  3. No charges are currently pending against the person;
  4. The person was never convicted of any crime that is not eligible for expungement (manslaughter, arson, robbery, etc.);
  5. The person never had an adult conviction expunged; AND
  6. The person has never had adult criminal charges dismissed because of participation in a Pre-Trial Intervention Program (PTI).

If each of these criteria are complied with, then the individual can petition the court for expungement, regardless of the number of acts of delinquency on the juvenile record.

Can I Have an Expungement of Charges That Were Dismissed Before Conviction?

A juvenile that was arrested and, for some reason or another, had the charges dropped, dismissed, or discharged found not guilty can have any record of those charges expunged immediately.