Many residents of Tennessee committed crimes when they were young and now, upon reaching maturity, want to have the record of conviction removed from their record. This process is called “expunction.” Not every convicted felon or every crime is eligible for expunction, but the eligibility requirements for an expunction are worth knowing.
A person’s record may be expunged of all information regarding a prior criminal conviction if they have never been convicted of any other criminal offense, including federal crimes and convictions in other states after their conviction in Tennessee. If a person was convicted of multiple crimes, the record of those convictions can be expunged if the following conditions are satisfied: the crimes were committed contemporaneously and at the same location, were all part of a single continuous criminal episode, and all of the offenses are individually eligible for expunction. The crime for which expunction is requested must be an eligible Class E or Class D felony as listed on this link.
Five years must have elapsed from the completion of any sentence imposed, and the applicant must have fulfilled all of the requirements of the sentence, including completing a term of imprisonment or probation, payment of all fines, court costs and assessments, meeting all terms of supervised or unsupervised release, and, if required by the original sentence, remaining free from dependency on or abuse of alcohol or drugs for not less than one year. All of these conditions must be satisfied to be eligible for expunction.
An application for expunction must be made in writing to the court that imposed the original sentence .Anyone who is seeking to have a conviction expunged from his or her criminal record should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney for a review of the crimes proposed for expunction and whether the person meets the eligibility requirements for expunction.