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Adjudication Process Questions

What is adjudication?

Adjudication is a legal action which involves a judge reviewing evidence and making a determination as to the rights and obligations of the people or parties who are involved. Adjudication can settle three different types of disputes: disputes between private individuals or businesses, disputes between private parties and public officials, and disputes between public officials and public bodies. Below are a few of the more commonly asked questions regarding adjudication.

A member of my family has a deferred adjudication on his record which has cost him many job opportunities. However, he was told that he cannot have the record expunged as his crime was committed in Texas. How can he remove this from his record?

A Motion for Non-Disclosure will allow a felony deferred adjudication to be sealed as long as they don't fall under the following:

“Indecency with a child, Sexual assault, Aggravated sexual assault, Prohibited sexual conduct (incest) Aggravated kidnapping, Burglary of a habitation with intent to commit any of the above offenses, Compelling prostitution, Sexual performance by a child, Possession or promotion of child pornography, Unlawful restraint, kidnapping, or aggravated kidnapping of a person younger than 17 years of age, Attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation to commit any of the above offenses, Capital murder, Murder, Injury to a child / elderly individual / disabled individual, Abandoning or endangering a child Violation of protective order or magistrate's order, Stalking, and any other offense involving family violence.”


If your family member doesn't have a felony related to any of the categories listed above, he/she should be able to file a Motion for Non-Disclosure with the court. However, this cannot be done until five years after supervisory period. The family member will need to send a copy of the motion to all parties (DA, probation officer, etc.) that were involved in his/her case. There will be a hearing set after they have filed the motion. At this time, the person can ask that the record be sealed. You can find the form for the motion on line but you should have an attorney assist you in this matter. The cost for an attorney will depend on each individual attorney.

I had a deferred adjudication case for a felony assault w/ deadly weapon in 1998, I completed probation of 5 years. Am I eligible to purchase a handgun in Texas?

When a person receives a felony conviction, the federal government takes the person's gun rights away. Usually, in order to have your rights restored by the federal government, your felony would have to be expunged, pardoned or set aside. Because your felony is a deferred adjudication, you may be able to have the felony expunged. You need to check you state's expungement law to see if you are eligible and what you need to do. This shouldn't require an attorney, however if you don't feel comfortable handling this on your own, you should hire one. While Texas will automatically restore your gun rights five years after a conviction, the federal government requires the felony to be expunged, set aside or pardoned.

I received deferred adjudication on an injury to a child with 10 years probation. My job requires me to travel state to state and country to country, there were no restrictions set by the judge in traveling to and from work. Will I have any problems at air ports and such?

Generally, a person shouldn't have an issue while flying. Airline security and Homeland security requires an ID check of every passenger, however, they don't check for probation status. The only foreseeable problem that you could face would be if a warrant was issued for your arrest and you went through customs after returning from abroad. Customs could possibly come across the warrant and you would be arrested. If you don't have a warrant, you should be fine to travel.

Is it possible to make a motion to have an adjudication withheld on a traffic ticket that has already been paid?

The decision to allow the adjudication will be up to the judge. The first step is to file a motion to vacate the judgment and state your reasons why the judgment should be vacated. The judge will decide whether or not to allow the adjudication and/or allow the case to go to court.

Adjudication is the act of a neutral individual of authority to determine a resolution in the form of a judgment. Typically, this action is performed by a judge but can also be performed through arbitration. If you have an issue regarding adjudication and need clarification, you should seek the insight of an Expert.
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