Texas Juvenile Records

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To read the statutes regarding sealing juvenile records feel free to take a look at Texas Family Code Section 58.003. If you are looking to seal your juvenile record, be sure to determine if you are eligible and take the steps necessary. If you are able to have your record sealed, your offense could be removed from the criminal history database entirely. Many people are unaware that they even have a juvenile criminal record. If you have been arrested or charged with a crime between the ages of 10 and 17 you most likely have a juvenile record.

Also, many think that once you turn 18, the juvenile offenses are sealed. This is not the case, the offense remains on the record. This means that the record system permanently has your offense on file unless you fight to have it sealed and succeed. Until you do so, anyone of legitimate interest including employers, college admissions employees and law enforcement agencies can search this record. If you have questions about your record or are interested in pursuing the sealing of your record, contact a San Antonio criminal defense lawyer from our firm.

Who is and who is not eligible to seal their record?

There are many cases that are eligible for sealing the record. If there was no adjudication involved, the individual has to wait two years from the discharge date and also not have any other convictions or pending cases. But after the waiting period, you will most likely be able to pursue sealing your record. The cases that are not eligible for this are cases that received determinate sentencing, which can happen for any of the following offenses:

If there was a case that was moved to adult court or if the juvenile offender is ordered to register as a sex offender, they are then disqualified from sealing their record. Also, the amount of offenses that the defendant has been adjudicated on affects their eligibility. If the juvenile is a habitual offender that has three or more felonies (third degree or higher), they are also disqualified.

Automatic Restriction of Access to Records

This system is another way to partially protect the juvenile. This is a way to restrict access to your record without destroying or sealing the record. Once you are 21, the record is still available for prosecution and other criminal justice agencies to view, but not for employers or college admissions agencies. If those types of groups ask for a record, the agency in charge will say that the record does not exist. You can also legally deny being charged for the crime overall. A juvenile's record can be subject to automatic restriction of access if:

  • The juvenile is at least 21 years old
  • The case did not include violent or habitual felony conduct
  • The case was not certified for trial in a criminal court
  • The system does not show that the juvenile was convicted for a felony or misdemeanor that results in jail time after the juvenile was 17 years old

There are a lot of cases that do not qualify for the Automatic Restriction of Access, feel free to contact our firm if you have questions about whether or not your case is eligible. For help with the process of sealing or restricting your record, contact a San Antonio juvenile crime attorney from our firm. Call The Law Office of John J. Fox today to schedule a free case evaluation!

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