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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 23152
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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Several years ago, I was charged with a misdemeanor and all

Customer Question

Several years ago, I was charged with a misdemeanor and all charges were dropped. Now it is very hard to find a job since I was laid off. Is their a way I can get this sponged off.
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 6 months ago.
Hello, Unfortunately, Pennsylvania is one of the toughest states to get an expungement and the answer to is no. Your state will allow convictions on summary offenses to be expunged. But with misdmeanor or felonyl convictions, you must wait until you have been dead for three years (no, I am not kidding)or until after turn 70 and even at 70 you have to have had no contact with the law for 10 years before you apply, except for traffic violations. However, you would be eligible to apply to the governor for a Pardon. You can find more information about that here. pardon does not expunge the record, but it does officially forgive the offense. It's a longshot, but it is free, and there is no reason not to go for it.There is one other thing you could do now, also a longshot, but unlike the pardon it is not free. it would mean retaining a lawyer to assist because the petition would be complicated. That would be to have a lawyer reopen your case and petition for it to be dismissed in the interest of justice.Judges have the power to dismiss a case under their powers of equity, even if the law won't provide for the dismissal. They are very cautious and sparing in their use of this power, and some will refuse to entertain a petition on these grounds at all. But others will do it to prevent an injustice.You would need to talk to a lawyer about bringing the motion. He will have to draft it essentially showing why the law under which you were convicted should now be ignored in your case. There may be opposition from the DA and from the complainant if there is one and he can be reached for comment. So you might want to get some free or low cost consultations to get a sense of how likely this is to work in your jurisdiction before you pay a couple of thousand dollars to a lawyer to try to get this done. But either option would probably beat waiting until you turn 70.Good luck!