ALABAMA EXPUNGEMENT PETITION – FACTORS CONSIDERED BY COURT

Alabama Expungement PetitionThe Court Must Consider Certain Factors When Ruling On Alabama Expungement Petition

The factors that the court must consider in ruling on your Alabama expungement petition are set out in the Alabama Code as part of the new expungement law.  The factors can be found at Alabama Code § 15-27-5.  The factors are as follows:

Nature and seriousness of the offense committed

Certain criminal offenses are by their very nature more serious than others.  Crimes involving personal injury are considered more serious than property crimes.  Additionally, the seriousness of a criminal act can be judge in relation to the amount of economic harm done by the commission of the crime, the number of victims, whether the act was an isolated incident or part of a larger number of criminal acts.  In ruling on your Alabama expungement petition, the court will consider the totality of the circumstances involved in your case to judge the seriousness of the crime.

Circumstances under which the offense occurred

The particular facts of your case will affect the outcome of your Alabama expungement petition.  Each case has its own unique facts, and cannot necessarily be judged in comparison to other cases.  At times there are specific and particular facts that can affect your expungement, such as the nature of the victim (elderly or young person), whether you were in a trusted position in relation to the victim, whether restitution was made, or whether the criminal act was done for reasons other than personal monetary gain.  A critical analysis of the facts of your case is essential, as is a meaningful presentation of these facts both in a written petition and in the hearing on the petition.  Seeking the counsel of an experienced attorney is highly advised in order to have the best chance of success.

Date of the offense

The length of time between the filing of your Alabama expungement petition and the case is important to consider.  The longer the time span the better, as it gives the court more justification to believe that the incident was a one time thing.

Age of the person when the offense was committed

Your age at the time of arrest and charge is also an important consideration.  More allowance is made for youthful indiscretion.

Whether the offense was an isolated or repeated incident

If the criminal case is an isolated incident, it will be a large factor in your favor.  Repeated incidents of criminal behavior will give the court no confidence that you would not potentially repeat the criminal behavior in the future.  However, even if you have a number of criminal matters on your record, a showing of reformation and a good track record in recent years can overcome multiple incidents.

Other conditions which may have contributed to the offense

In ruling on your Alabama expungement petition, the court will consider such rings as whether you were under economic pressure at the time of the incident, whether your suffered from duress, or whether you were coerced or bullied into taking part in the criminal behavior.  An Alabama criminal defense attorney can review your case to identify these contributing factors and to present them in a positive light to the court.

An available probation or parole record, report, or recommendation

The court will also consider any probation report from the time of the case, or any parole report for any case in which you were involved.  At times these report will contain historical information about the case itself as well as your social and family history.

Whether the offense was dismissed or nolle prossed as part of a negotiated plea agreement and the petitioner plead guilty to another related or lesser offense

The court will take note of any negotiated plea agreement so as to respect the terms of any agreement.  Additionally, it may affect the expungement if the case was dismissed as part of a plea deal in which you entered a guilty plea on some other case.  You should seek the advice of an Alabama criminal defense attorney to help determine how your case was disposed of and what effect it could have on expungement.

Evidence of rehabilitation, including good conduct in prison or jail, in the community, counseling or psychiatric treatment received, acquisition of additional academic or vocational schooling, successful business or employment history, and the recommendation of his or her supervisors or other persons in the community.

Evidence that you have had good behavior and conduct since the time of the criminal case is one of the most important factors.  An experienced attorney can present this information in a meaningful way to the court.

Any other matter the court deems relevant, which may include, but is not limited to, a prior expungement of the petitioner’s records

The court is not limited to the listed factors from the expungement law, and can consider anything that would either positively or negatively affect the decision on your petition.  Having an attorney to assist you in drawing the court’s attention to other positive evidence and information is curtail to obtaining expungement.  An experienced lawyer can develop information that will significantly assist you in obtaining expungement.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON EXPUNGEMENT IN ALABAMA VIEW OUR OTHER INFORMATIONAL PAGES:

ALABAMA EXPUNGEMENT – THE DETAILS OF THE LAW AND PROCESS

WHAT ARE VIOLENT CRIMES UNDER THE NEW EXPUNGEMENT LAW

IF YOU NEED ASSISTANCE WITH EXPUNGEMENT… CONTACT BRADFORD LADNER LLP TODAY

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Bradford Ladner, LLP. is an Birmingham Alabama law firm practicing Alabama criminal defense, Alabama divorce law, Alabama appellate law and Alabama civil litigation in all State and Federal Courts Statewide.
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