Protecting Your Reputation Through A Petition For Nondisclosure And Sealing Of Record
The attorneys at Hildreth & Rueda have handled hundreds of nondisclosures in Austin, and throughout Williamson, Hays and Travis counties. We will prepare the necessary petition for nondisclosure and argue your case to the judge to get your record sealed. Once the court grants the nondisclosure, criminal justice agencies will not be allowed to disclose information about your case to most law enforcement and government agencies.
Can I Seal My DWI Record?
Under Texas’ law, the DWI nondisclosure statute allows those who are contending with a conviction of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) to file a petition to ask the court to seal the record of their DWI. While certain restrictions apply, you may ask to have your record sealed, even if you were sentenced to probation or jail time for Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). The law went into effect in 2017 and is retroactive. This means you can still apply for nondisclosure even if your DWI conviction was before 2017.
Eligibility For Sealing Of Your Record
A person is eligible to seal his or her criminal record through nondisclosure after successfully completing deferred adjudication probation for certain misdemeanor and felony offenses. Deferred adjudication is a form of probation that requires you to plead guilty or no contest to your criminal charge, but where the judge defers a finding of guilt and never finds you guilty if you successfully complete the terms of your probation.
If you successfully complete your deferred adjudication probation, and your criminal offense qualifies under Texas law, you will be eligible for nondisclosure as follows: (1) immediately; (2) in two years; or (3) in five years. If you received a final conviction for any reason, including paying a fine and accepting time served, you will not be eligible for nondisclosure. A final conviction is final — there is no way to seal this type of record, no matter how many years pass.
Misdemeanor Charges And Sealing Of Your Record
If you have successfully completed deferred adjudication for any of the following misdemeanors then you are eligible to seal your record immediately without any waiting period required:
- Criminal trespass
- Failure to supply an ID to police officer
- Evading arrest on foot
- Burglary of a coin operated machine
- Resisting arrest
- Possession of marijuana
- Theft (Misdemeanor)
The following misdemeanor offenses are eligible to be sealed through a non disclosure after successfully completed the deferred adjudication and then waiting two years before filing a petition of nondisclosure:
- Assault (as long as no finding of family violence)
- Deadly conduct
- Discharge of firearm
- Public lewdness
- Indecent exposure
- Unlawful carrying of a weapon (UCW)
- Possession of a prohibited weapon
- Terroristic threat (misdemeanor)
- Interference with an emergency phone call
All qualifying felony offenses have a five year waiting period before you can file a petition for nondisclosure.
The following criminal offenses are never eligible for a petition for nondisclosure even upon successful completion of deferred adjudication:
- Indecency with a child
- Sexual assault
- Aggravated sexual assault
- Prohibited sexual conduct
- Aggravated kidnapping
- Compelling prostitution
- Sexual performance by a child
- Injury to a child
- Violation of a protective order
- Any offense involving family violence
- Possession or promotion of child pornography
- Unlawful restraint, kidnapping, or aggravated kidnapping
- Murder and capital murder
- Attempt, conspiracy or solicitation, to commit any of the above offenses
- Effect of sealing your criminal record through non-disclosure
Although, Texas law does allow some government entities and law enforcement agencies to obtain information about your criminal history even after a non disclosure has been granted, such as the Boards that regulate nurses and teachers, the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, and TABC. Through this process of nondisclosure, you can deny that you were ever arrested for purposes of loan applications, job interviews and leases. However, unlike an expunction, you cannot deny that you were arrested in any future criminal prosecution.