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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27435
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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I was arrested of a controlled substance

Customer Question

Hi, I was arrested for possession of a controlled substance a number years ago in New York. The case was dismissed and I believe the case was sealed.
I received a certificate of disposition from the court and it came with two pages. The first page listed the section of law which I was charged with and stated that it was dismissed.
The second page looked exactly like the first but instead just said sealed where the information was on the first page.
Can I take that this as conclusive evidence that it is in fact sealed? Can you also confirm that this will not come up on a background check for a job (whether in the court records or an arrest record).
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 2 years ago.
My name is ***** ***** I am an experienced New York State criminal lawyer.'
If your certificate of disposition shows your case was sealed, then that is conclusive evidence that it is sealed.
When you say the case was dismissed what do you mean? That is, did the court dismiss the case outright on the merits, or was the case reduced to a violation where you had to take a plea or ACD'd? (Adjourned in Contemplation of Dismssal)
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi ZoeThe case was dismissed outright and sealed.However, I did a background search on myself recently and it appears by some sort of clerical error the case appeared and it states that "it is not yet disposed" despite the fact the case was over 3 years ago and my cert of disposition states that it was. I rang the courts about it but they refused to talk about it as it's sealed.I believe the issue relates to the fact that the case was adjourned in the first instance. The background check refers to the fact the case was adjourned and it states that it is scheduled for three weeks from that date (such date being 3 years ago). Im not sure what to do.
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 2 years ago.
If it was sealed, then all of the arrest information should have been sealed with it.
If it was dismissed, it gets sealed by operation of law, meaning it happens with a dismissal automatically without your having to come back to court to make it happen.
You can get printed and order your criminal record from the state. It will appear on your record because you have ordered it, but it should say that it is sealed. If it does not, you'd have to contact DCJS == The Department of Criminal Justice Services -- since they maintain the state database.
You can write to DCJS and enclose copies of your documentation and ask them to correct the error.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
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