How to Restrict (Expunge) Records of a Case Placed on the Dead Docket and Seal the Court Records

Placing a case on the “dead docket” means the prosecution suspends the case indefinitely, but it can be reinstated at any time by the court. The case is still pending while on the dead docket and some employers may not hire you for this reason. If your case was placed on the dead docket, you can ask the court to restrict (expunge) the record after it has been on the dead docket for a period of twelve (12) months. See O.C.G.A. 35-337(j)(3).

ELIGIBILITY:

  1. The case was placed on the dead docket;
  2. The case has been on the dead docket for twelve (12) months; and
  3. You do not have an active warrant.

PROCESS:

  1. File an action (motion/petition) in the superior court in the county where the record is located for an order to restrict the record.
    1. If the dead docketed charge(s) was handled in superior court, see “How to Restrict (Expunge) Charge(s) Handled in Superior Court (Usually Felonies)” on page 101.
    2. If the dead docketed charge(s) was not handled in superior court, see “How to Restrict (Expunge)  Charge(s) NOT Handled in Superior Court (Usually Misdemeanors)” on page 103.
  2. Deliver a copy of the action to the prosecutor’s office.
  3. If a hearing is requested, it must occur within ninety (90) days of the filing.
  4. The court will consider the reason the case was placed on the dead docket and grant restriction if appropriate.
  5. If the court orders the records restricted, you can submit a written request for restriction to the jail/detention center and the law requires the records be restricted within thirty (30) days of your request. See “How to Restrict (Expunge) Records Kept by the Jail” on page 110.

REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION:

  1. Certified copy of the final disposition from the clerk of court.
  2. Motion/Petition to Restrict. (Sample documents are included with these instructions)

Posted in: Restriction