If you’ve been convicted of a felony in Washington you already know how difficult it can be to obtain employment, housing, certain insurance and bonds, commercial financing, professional licensing, or even travel to some countries. The good news is you may be eligible to have your conviction vacated for good. The Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer devotes a substantial part of its practice helping people convicted of crimes in Washington restore their record and removing the barriers a conviction can have on life’s opportunities.
CRIMES NOT ELIGIBLE
- Any class A felony or attempt to commit a class A felony.
- Criminal solicitation of or criminal conspiracy to commit a class A felony.
- Extortion in the first or second degree.
- Drive-by shooting.
- Vehicular homicide.
- Aggravated, first-, or second degree murder.
- First or second-degree kidnapping.
- Vehicular assault, when you were driving while under the influence OR operating a vehicle in a reckless manner.
- First-, second-, or third-degree assault.
- First-, second-, or third-degree assault of a child.
- First-, second-, or third-degree rape.
- First-, second-, or third-degree rape of a child.
- First- or second-degree robbery.
- First- or second-degree arson.
- First-degree burglary.
- First or second degree manslaughter.
- Indecent liberties.
- First-degree promoting prostitution.
- Communication with a minor.
- Unlawful imprisonment.
- Sexual exploitation of minors.
- First- or second-degree criminal mistreatment.
- Endangerment with a controlled substance.
- Child abuse or neglect (defined in RCW 26.44.020).
- First- or second-degree custodial interference.
- First- or second-degree custodial sexual misconduct.
- Malicious harassment.
- First-, second, or third-degree child molestation./li>
- First- or second-degree sexual misconduct with a minor.
- Patronizing a juvenile prostitute.
- Child abandonment.
- Promoting pornography.
- Selling/distributing erotic material to a minor.
- Custodial assault.
- Violation of child abuse restraining order.
- Child buying or selling.
- Felony indecent exposure.
- Criminal abandonment.
- Any federal or out-of-state conviction for an offense that under the laws of this state that might count in Washington as one of the above felonies.
Even if you do not qualify, but are seeking a professional license or you are at risk of losing your current professional license, we may still be able to help! [Click here to Learn More about Obtaining a Certification of Restoration of Opportunity]
EFFECTS of having a criminal conviction vacated can have a hugely positive effect on your life.
- You can legally state without hesitation and “for all purposes” that’ve you’ve never been convicted of the crime you have successfully vacated.
- You are released from all penalties and disabilities resulting from the offense.
- The court order vacating your conviction is sent to the Washington State Patrol and the FBI. Your record of conviction cannot be disclosed except to other criminal justice enforcement agencies.
The law in general is full of exceptions. Here is what you should know:
- If you were convicted of the following domestic violence felony after July 1, 1993, (Violating a Protection Order or No-Contact Order) and it was committed by one family or household member against another family or household member the court was required to inform you orally and in writing that your right to possess and use firearms was revoked. Vacating your conviction will NOT restore your firearm rights. Good News! We can also help you get your firearm rights restored.
- When applying for professional licensing, the licensing board or agency can require that you disclose your prior convictions regardless of whether it was vacated. Prior misdemeanor and even some felony convictions are not generally automatic bars to professional licensing; however, failing to make proper disclosures in the application process can be a bar in many cases. Often the fact that you have been conviction free, completed all terms of your sentence, and took the additional step to vacate your conviction can make the difference in your application.
- The court, FBI and the Washington State Patrol don’t control private third-party databases which may have a record of your conviction. Some third-party databases will continue to report the conviction even after it has been vacated. Good News – We can also help you work with each third-party to have the record updated to reflect your conviction was vacated.
- If you are not a citizen of the United States your vacated conviction may still operate as a conviction for purposes of determining your admissibility, or in removal from the country. Good News! We can review your case to determine if you may be eligible for other post-conviction relief. We have helped several client's reverse convictions on state and federal constitutional grounds after removal proceedings have been initiated which has ultimately prevented our clients from being deported.
Note: Misdemeanors have different rules.
The following is a list of conditions that prevent or prohibit your felony conviction from being vacated:
- Criminal charges are pending against the offender in any state or federal court;
- The conviction was for a violent offense as defined in RCW 9.94A.030 or a crime against persons as defined in RCW 43.43.830;
- The offender has been convicted of a new crime in any state or federal court since discharge;
- The offense is a class A felony;
- The offense is a class B felony and less than ten years have passed since discharge;
- The offense is a class C felony described in RCW 46.61.502(6) or RCW 46.61.504(6);
- The offense is any class C felony, other than those described in RCW 46.61.502(6) or RCW 46.61.504(6), and less than five years have passed since discharge.