New York Sealing of Criminal Record: FAQ

Can you seal a misdemeanor in NY?

Yes. As of October, 2017, New York law allows for the sealing of one misdemeanor conviction under certain circumstances under the New York Criminal Procedure Law, CPL 160.59. A young person may also be able to have the record of their case sealed if they are eligible for Youthful Offender status under Criminal Procedure Law, Sections 720.10 through 720.35.

What Does it Mean when a Case is Sealed

When a criminal case is sealed in New York, it essentially means that the records related to that case are no longer available to the public. However, this does not necessarily mean that a police department's or other non-court agency's own internal records will be sealed or destroyed.

How Long Does it Take for a Felony to be Off Your Record

In New York, a felony conviction will remain on your criminal record forever. This is also true of misdemeanor convictions. However, you may be able to have a single felony conviction and a single misdemeanor conviction sealed in certain circumstances, under the New York Criminal Procedure Law, CPL 160.59, which means that the records of those convictions will no longer be available to the public.

How many convictions can I get sealed?

Under CPL 160.59, you are limited to sealing two convictions, only one of which may be a felony. In addition, certain classes of offenses are not eligible for sealing, such as most sex offenses and violent felonies.

Can I get my record sealed if I have an open case now?

You are ineligible for sealing if you have a criminal case currently pending. CPL 160.59.

How long do I have to wait to get by criminal record sealed in NY?

Sealing is only available after 10 years have passed from the date of sentence or the date of release from the latest period of incarceration, whichever is later. CPL 160.59.

What factors will the Court consider when deciding to seal my criminal record?

If you are eligible, and make a motion to seal one or two prior convictions, the Court will consider many different factors in considering your application: (1) the amount of time that has elapsed since the last conviction; (2) the circumstances and seriousness of the crimes; (3) your character and efforts you have made toward rehabilitation; (4) any statements made by the victim(s) of the underlying offenses; and (5) how sealing will impact you and the public. CPL 160.59.

Call the New York State criminal defense lawyers and former New York City prosecutors at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today.

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