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Lannom Williams Law Group - Providing criminal defense and civil trial practice for Wilson County, Tennessee

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Lebanon, TN 37087
615.444.2900
FAX (615) 444-6516
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Is Your Criminal Conviction Eligible for Expungement

frank door openIs Your Criminal Conviction Eligible for Expungement in Tennessee?

As we’ve discussed in earlier articles, the Tennessee Legislation passed T.C.A 40-32-101(g) in July of 2013 which allowed for certain prior convictions to be expunged. This method of expungement has allowed many of our clients to remove that one mistake that has followed them throughout their life. I emphasize the “one” because the expungement statute only allowed for “a criminal offense” to be expunged and any other offenses made the first or eligible offense ineligible to be expunged. The problem that many people have learned when attempting to have their criminal record expunged is that, when police make an arrest, they often charge the defendant with multiple offenses and that defendant will ultimately plead guilty to two or more offenses.

Starting July 1, 2014, those that have been arrested for multiple offenses during “a single continuous criminal episode” may now be eligible to have their criminal record expunged. This expands the number of citizens who could have their criminal history wiped away, which would be a vast improvement on their future.

The Legislature has made another significant change to the expungement statute. The statute currently allows for T.C.A. 39-17-417(g)(1)--Manufacture, delivery, sale or possession of not less than ½ ounce and not more than 10 pounds of Schedule VI drug marijuana (fine not greater than $1,000) to be expunged.  The problem has been that the Tennessee Drug Control Act requires a mandatory minimum fine of $2,000 for the convicted person. So, once citizens are found guilty and then a try to have this charge expunged, they find out they cannot because the statute only allows for the offense to be expunged when the fine is not greater than $1,000. The mandatory minimum fine increase from $1,000 to $ 2,500 makes this specific offense now eligible for expungement.  The statute does require other conditions be met before a person is considered a qualified petitioner. These include:
  1. Five (5) years have elapsed since the sentence has expired;
  2. All the terms of the sentence are completed (court cost, restitution, etc.);
  3. The offense for which you seek expungement is listed in the felony inclusion list or is a misdemeanor not listed on the exclusion list.  
erase pastSince prior convictions can have such negative effects on a person’s future, from job interviews to loan applications, I am glad the Legislature saw fit to broaden the law to give citizen’s a second chance at a clean record. If you have a prior conviction that you think might be eligible for expungement, please give our office a call.

In Defense of the Citizen Accused,
~ Frank Lannom (Donnovan Vasek Contributor)
(Handling criminal cases in Lebanon, Mount Juliet, Murfreesboro, Gallatin, Lafayette, Smyrna and all other Middle Tennessee areas)




LANNOM & WILLIAMS
137 Public Square Lebanon, TN 37087
Via Phone: (615) 444-2900 Via Facsimile: (615) 444-6516 Toll Free: (866) 820-4457

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