Thursday, October 3, 2019

If I Violated My Probation, Can I Get an Expungement?

Previously, courts generally automatically denied expungement in a case where a probation violation occurred. However, since People v. McLernon, 174 Cal. App. 4Th 569 (2009), courts must now consider all facts, including post probation conduct by a person seeking expungement:

“Indeed, the amendment was requested by the attorney for a defendant who, after a probation violation, completed his probation with no further violations, raised his child alone, and then went to college, worked without pay for the State Parole Board, and was trying to become a social worker. Although the trial court in his case expressed a desire to grant relief under section 1203.4, it concluded it could not do so because of the defendant's ... violation. The amendment to section 1203.4 was designed to give courts the ability to grant relief in these circumstances. Thus, in determining whether to grant relief under the discretionary provision, the trial court may consider any relevant information, including the defendant's post-probation conduct.”

This means that even if you violated your probation (unless you were sent to state prison as a result of the violation), you may still be able to expunge your case. Each case is different and depends upon the facts, and the Judge still has discretion to deny the expungement, but we have been very successful in getting positive results in many cases with probation violations.