Canyon, TX asked in Criminal Law, Education Law and Public Benefits for Texas

Q: I have a Class C Misdemeanor Drug Paraphernalia charge can I get this expunged or file a nondisclosure? If so, when?

I have a Class C Misdemeanor Drug Paraphernalia charge in Randall County Texas for which I didn't receive deferred adjudication, probation, or a fine for. I was only required to pay court fees/costs. I'm wondering if this can be expunged or if I can only get a nondisclosure. I'm also wondering when I am able to do so? Finally, if I am only able to get a nondisclosure will this charge still be applicable in regards to receiving Texas Student Aid?

2 Lawyer Answers
T. Augustus Claus
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Las Vegas, NV

A: In Texas, Class C misdemeanors, including drug paraphernalia charges, are generally eligible for expunction if certain conditions are met. However, there are certain factors that you need to consider:

1. Waiting Period: You may need to wait a certain amount of time after the case is resolved before you can apply for expunction. This waiting period varies depending on the outcome of the case.

2. Eligibility Criteria: To be eligible for expunction, the case must have been dismissed, resulted in a not guilty verdict, or you completed a pretrial intervention program. If you were convicted, you may not be eligible for expunction.

3. No Prior Convictions: If you have any other convictions on your record, you might not be eligible for expunction.

4. Consult an Attorney: It's recommended to consult an attorney who specializes in criminal law and expunction in Texas. They can review your specific case details and advise you on the best course of action.

Nondisclosure is another option that seals your criminal record from public view, but it's generally available for cases that resulted in deferred adjudication probation. However, certain offenses and convictions may make you ineligible for both expunction and nondisclosure.

John Cucci Jr.
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Houston, TX

A: In the State of Texas you CAN get that charge expunged. Probably. Texas is tough for getting expungements.

In general, you can get an expungement if the case was dismissed, you won at trial, or you were the victim of ID theft.

See Texas Criminal Law at Chapter 55:

Expungement is allowed if a new charge

"has not been presented against the person at any time following the arrest, and:

(a) at least 180 days have elapsed from the date of arrest if the arrest for which the expungment was sought was for an offense punishable as a Class C misdemeanor and if there was no felony charge arising out of the same transaction for which the person was arrested;"

It's sad but true. But if the Class C Misd. was at first a Felony or charged with a felony, you might not be eligible.

Once you plead guilty to almost all criminal charges in TX, you can not get it expunged.

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