Expunging Marijuana Arrests & Convictions in Illinois

Posted on January 15th, 2020 by Danielle Giannola

Criminal Defense Lawyer

Illinois’ new law related to legalization of marijuana use doesn’t just legalize recreational marijuana use – it also allows some marijuana arrests and convictions to be expunged from your criminal record. For specific questions on your prior arrests and convictions, contact Giannola Legal LLC to discuss your case with one of our trusted and experienced criminal defense lawyers in DuPage County, Illinois.

What is Expungement

When a criminal conviction is expunged, it means that the conviction is removed from your criminal record. As far as the court is concerned, it’s as if the conviction never happened. Once expunged, the arrest/conviction won’t show up on a background check and employers cannot consider it in their hiring decisions.

Automatic Expungement:

Under Illinois’ new law, certain marijuana charges will be automatically expunged from your record. If you were arrested for possessing 30 grams or less of marijuana but never convicted, Illinois will automatically expunge the arrest from your record.
If you were actually convicted of possessing 30 grams or less of marijuana, Illinois will still expunge your conviction automatically, so long as the marijuana conviction was not related to a more serious crime. You don’t have to do anything for the expungement to happen if your arrest/conviction qualifies for automatic expungement. The State will send you a letter notifying you when your record has been expunged.

Petitioning for Expungement:

Even if you do not qualify for automatic expungement, you may be able to petition the court to expunge your marijuana possession conviction. If you were convicted of possessing between 30 and 500 grams of marijuana, you can petition for expungement after the mandatory waiting period. The length of time you must wait before petitioning the court depends on how you were sentenced.
While expungement petition forms are generally available online, it’s always advisable to consult an experienced criminal attorney who can help you navigate the expungement process and make sure your petition moves through the court system as efficiently as possible. Giannola Legal LLC’s criminal defense lawyers in DuPage County, Illinois, as well as the surrounding counties, will guide you accordingly.

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