The Pearson Law Firm


What is an expunction of a criminal record?


In North Carolina, an expunction is the destruction of a criminal record by court order. This same process is sometimes also called “expungement” of a criminal record. 

After the expunction is complete the individual, in the view of the law, is in the same status as before the criminal record existed. With a few exceptions, after an individual is granted an expunction he or she will not have to disclose anything further about the incident.

Why is expunction relevant?

Expunction can help with finding good housing

A criminal record can make it hard to find good paying work or affordable housing. It can also complicate family matters, and make it difficult in variety of other ways for an individual to be able to have a good quality of life and provide for their family. 

After receiving an expunction, a person may, for example, without false statement answer on a job application that they have not faced criminal charges. 

Who qualifies for an expunction?


Criminal records eligible for expunction in North Carolina are generally limited to the following three categories:

  • A first-time, nonviolent offense committed more than 15 years ago, or
  • A first-time offense committed under age 18 or 22, depending the circumstances of the offense, or 
  • A charge that was  dismissed or disposed “not guilty”  

What are the steps to getting an expunction?


First, we need to know more about you and your situation. 

If after an initial meeting Mr. Pearson thinks an expunction is possible, he will need a complete copy of your criminal record

 Next, he'll examine your record to determine which legal issues to address. Motions for appropriate relief (MARs) occur at this stage. 

Finally, it's time to submit a petition for expunction. Once the Judge approves, it's submitted to the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI). After return from the SBI, the Judge signs the order and the expunction is complete.

How long does it take to get an expunction?


From the first meeting to the final removal of the charges from all records it can take as long as eight months to one year

If you think you might be making an upcoming application for a new job or school program, please call us! 

If you qualify for this opportunity for a fresh start you will want to get started right away to have plenty of time before your application is due.

Questions? Ready to get started? Call us now!


If you feel any of your convictions need to be reviewed, please contact us to discuss your situation. 

Options to re-open your record may be available which could allow you to qualify for an expunction.

Mr. Pearson offers a free 30-minute consult for all criminal matters, including expunctions.​​ 

Call us at (828) 424-9859 today! 

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How will a clean slate help you?

There is not a doubt in my mind that God sent Mr. Pearson my way. Because of Mr. Pearson’s knowledge of the law and attention to detail, I was able to get some very serious charges against me expunged. Mr. Pearson took his time to walk me through each process step by step & made sure I was aware of any pros and cons. From the very first call to the very end, he kept me informed & responded promptly to any questions or concerns I had. Mr. Pearson is a true professional that has knowledge, compassion and drive to help his clients. I would highly refer him to friends, family or anyone in need of an attorney that goes above and beyond for his clients.   -- A.B.

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