Hello Jacustomer,California's expungement isn't a true expungement. It's a set-aside, meaning it's a dismissal. With this, you can say that you have no criminal convictions, but the government can always see underneath the "eraser marks" to the actual offense and plea agreement. So you're eligible for this under California law, but you would still be required to tell USCIS that you'd been convicted of a felony which was dismissed. Anything else, USCIS would consider fraudulent.The lawyers who were looking for heavy fees were taking advantage of you. Expungement is the one of the few areas of law where no lawyer is necessary. California makes it pretty easy to expunge a felony conviction. They even offer a free website which will give you step by step instructions to get it done, as well as links to the forms. Here's the link to California's expungement self-help center. The site will allow you to check your eligibility for an expungment (I believe you'll find you are eligible) and then will walk you through the rest of it.When you use the self-help link above and get to the home page, click on "Criminal Law" from the column on the left. Then click on "Cleaning your Criminal Record," scroll down towards the bottom of the page to the links and expand them so that you can see all of the steps.
Thank you for a speedy reply and the info provided. Just few more questions: I was originally charged/convicted in NC (9th Circuit) back in 2006- "Class H Embezzlement". Finished my 2 yr probation, finished college (UNC-CH), then moved to California back in 2008. Am I still eligible for this dismissal program in California? Any possible info where I can find ways to keep my green card & travel in and out would be great. Thanks again for your assistance.
Thanks Fran, you've been such a big help.
Are there anything else that I can pursue to somehow get myself back on track? I havent received any deportation letter or anything, the immigration lawyer said that I should be fine living in the states w/ my current green card w/o committing anymore crimes (even the traffic tickets), and although my green card expired last year the lawyer told me not to renew it. I just feel like there's got to be something that can change my life, I've spent my whole life studying to go to a good college but now i'm stuck because of my one bad choice made when I was young.
Thank you again.
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