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State agency won't remove info related to expunged crim record Criminal Records, Expungement

Discussion in 'Criminal Records, Expungement' started by Branded, Mar 22, 2006.

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  1. Branded

    Branded Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Hello, I recently succeeded in getting a 20-year old, college-era criminal record dismissed and then expunged in the state where it happened. (Was a very minor possession of controlled substance offense, that would have been a misdemeanor almost anywhere else besides such small southern towns with a prosecutor campaigning for re-election. Therefore, it was called a felony, but my sentence was only a fine.)

    I have never committed any other offense and do not have so much as a traffic violation in my history. I was so excited that at last, I had won the right to answer on job applications that I have not been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor. Legally this conviction never took place. But the potential careers I am interested in going on to now, and am finally eligible to (and without possible stigma following me), are state regulated/licensed ones. And that is where my hard-won expungement rights are going to be negated, I am told.

    For 10 years now, the Department of Professional Regulation in this state has displayed the fact in my current professional record that when I first applied to work in that area, I was put on probationary status for the first two years due to failure to disclose my criminal history on my job application (which was found through the mandatory nationwide background check). I believed that it would be my right to have this now-nonsensical piece of data (how could I have been disciplined for something that legally never happened) removed from IDPR records, like it is now required to be removed from all the big government records databases.

    But I asked the attorney who represents IDPR interests how to initiate the process, and she told me I will not be able to have this done. She stated that theirs is an administrative rather than legal arm, so is not held to removal requirements; and that the agency was accurate in their actions towards me at the time; and that it offers no equivalent of an expungement process in its own record. I believe that at first she was hypothesizing/deducing what she thought was the bottom line, but as the conversation went on it became The bottom line.

    I still maintain that the fact that by law, this incident never happened, trumps the IDPR's right to continue displaying the data. And that while they may be an "administrative" agency, they are still a government agency, and just like a legal arm, have enforcement and permission/denial powers just like one. Such that I'd think they must comply with my newfound right to eradication and privacy too. In fact, under the circumstances, I may have made things worse for myself by winning the expungement, because now a potential employer couldn't even obtain an official copy of my case from the court, to see for themselves that mine was in fact a very minor (and dated) offense.

    I will be extremely upset if it's true that the bottom line is that no, even now I really can't or shouldn't state on job applications that I have no convictions, because as soon as licensing me or verifying my licensing comes into it, up will pop "Failure to disclose criminal history." I have carried this very unfitting stigma and undeserved title of felon around with me for 20 years, and I would consider moving to another state before I will live with this forced label for the rest of my life.

    Was this IDPR attorney correct, do I have no right to demand removal of the info (which also readily shows up in any Internet search engine when my name is entered!)? Can they, do they or must they *ever* make exceptions? Thank you so much for any insights!!

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