When a conviction is placed on an individual’s record, it can make it particularly difficult for them to obtain a well-paying job or even get approved for an apartment or home. And because most criminal convictions remain on a person’s record for years or indefinitely, they may never be able to obtain the job they desire or get to live in a certain type of community. Although criminal convictions have held back certain individuals from obtaining the things they want and need, that might change after Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed bipartisan House Bills 4980-4985 and 5120.1
House Bills 4980-4985 and 5120, which are being referred to as the “Clean Slate” Criminal Justice Reform Bills, may allow individuals to have certain convictions expunged, or “removed” from their record. The new law, which is set to take effect in Spring 2021, will allow an individual to apply for and have certain convictions expunged if:
- They were charged with one felony offense and no more than two misdemeanor offenses. In this case, the individual could apply to have their felony offense expunged.
If an individual is looking to get a felony expunged from their record, they may not do so if the maximum penalty for the felony was life in prison or they attempted to commit a felony that carries a punishment of life in prison.
- If an individual was convicted of no more than two misdemeanor offenses and no felony offenses, they could apply to have one or both of their misdemeanor offenses expunged.
It is important to note that only certain types of felony and misdemeanor crimes can be expunged under the new law. For example, a person may qualify to get a felony or misdemeanor removed from their record if it is a marijuana offense that would not have been classified as a crime had it been committed after December 6, 2018, the date Michigan approved marijuana for recreational use.
Some other important things to keep in mind regarding Michigan’s “Clean Slate” Criminal Justice Reform Bills include:
- The bill “creates an automatic process for [expunging] eligible misdemeanors after seven years and eligible non-assaultive felonies after 10 years.”
- The bill also treats multiple felonies or misdemeanors as a single crime if:
- They arose within 24 hours of one another.
- Are not classified as an “assaultive crime.”
- Did not involve the possession of a dangerous weapon.
- Was not a crime that carries a penalty of 10 or more years in prison.
Michigan Criminal Defense Lawyer Stuart R. Shafer Can Assist an Individual with Getting Their Conviction Expunged
If an individual is looking to get a conviction expunged and the crime was committed in Michigan, they can contact a Michigan criminal defense lawyer for help. MI attorney Stuart R. Shafer is a qualified lawyer in MI who can review an individual’s criminal history and determine if they qualify under this new law to have their conviction expunged.
The Law Offices of Stuart R. Shafer, P.C. can be reached at:
1223 Turner Street, #333
Lansing, MI 48906