Beginning October 1, 2017, Montana will provide the legal option of expungement for misdemeanor offenses. No option of expungement has existed in Montana for nearly 30 years, and new options – to expunge one’s record, have never existed before for certain types of misdemeanors.
The option to expunge a misdemeanor from one’s record effectively means to “erase” any trace of it’s existence from one’s criminal history / criminal record. As technology makes it increasingly easy for anyone to dig into your past and discover any mistakes you might have made, the option of expunging one’s record is more important than it has ever been.
The exact procedure for achieving expungement in Montana, beginning October 1, 2017, is not yet entirely clear. The statute will permit you to expunge, but the statute gives no specific blueprint for the procedure – by which one may petition to erase one’s record. You will likely only get one chance to petition the expungement of your record, and you should consider the aid of an experienced law firm, such as Stevenson Law Office, which specializes in criminal defense, to initiate your expungement petition, and govern the procedure to erase your record.
Expungement will undoubtedly occur only on a case-by-case basis (depending on the type of prior conviction). Having a law firm such as Stevenson Law Office, whose attorneys have experience with most of the Judges and Prosecutors throughout Western Montana, should significantly increase your odds of success in the expungement process.