You can have a felony charge restricted on your criminal history if it was closed without conviction and you were convicted only of an unrelated misdemeanor offense in the case. See O.C.G.A. §35-3-37(j)(1).
- You were arrested within the last four (4) years;
- You were charged with a felony offense(s) but not convicted of the felony;
- You were convicted of an unrelated misdemeanor(s) in the case; and
- The record of the felony charge(s) is causing you harm. For instance, you are unable to secure employment and/or housing because of the record, which can be demonstrated through your testimony or denial letters from employers or housing providers.
- File an action (motion/petition) in the superior court in the county where the record is located for an order to restrict the felony charge.
- If the felony charges were indicted (i.e., the charge(s) was assigned a court case number), see “How to Restrict (Expunge) Charge(s) Handled in Superior Court (Usually Felonies)” on page 101.
- If the felony charges were never indicted (i.e., the charge(s) dismissed before the assignment of a court case number) or you are not sure whether the charges were indicted, see “How to Restrict (Expunge) Charge(s) NOT Handled in Superior Court (Usually Misdemeanors)” on page 103.
- Deliver a copy of the action to the prosecuting attorney’s office
- If requested, a hearing must be held within ninety (90) days of filing the request.
- The court will grant restriction if it determines that the misdemeanor conviction is not related to the felony (not a lesser included offense) and the harm you suffer clearly outweighs the public interest in the record.
- If the court orders the record restricted, you can submit a written request for restriction to the jail/detention center and the law requires the record be restricted within thirty (30) days of your request. See “How to Restrict (Expunge) Records Kept by the Jail” on Page 110.
- Certified copy of the final disposition from the clerk of court.
- Motion/Petition to Restrict. (Sample documents are included in these instructions)
- Evidence that the charge is causing you harm (such as keeping you from finding employment).
Posted in: Restriction