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Expungement Laws in Oklahoma: An Overview

Expungement, commonly referred to as record sealing, is a legal process that allows individuals to erase or seal their criminal records. In Oklahoma, expungement laws play a crucial role in providing individuals with a chance for a fresh start by removing the stigma associated with past criminal convictions. This article delves into the intricacies of expungement in Oklahoma, examining the eligibility criteria, types of expungement, and the application process.

Eligibility Criteria:

Oklahoma’s expungement laws specify certain eligibility criteria that individuals must meet to pursue record expungement. Generally, eligibility depends on factors such as the nature of the offense, the sentence received, and the time that has elapsed since the completion of the sentence. Misdemeanor and nonviolent felony convictions may be eligible for expungement, while certain
offenses, such as sex crimes or violent felonies, may have more stringent criteria. Certain offenses that have been resolved by a limited fine may be eligible for immediate expungement.

Types of Expungement:

Oklahoma recognizes various types of expungement, each catering to specific circumstances. These include:
Section 18 Expungement: Individuals acquitted, granted a full pardon, or whose convictions were reversed on appeal may qualify for expungement under Section 18 of Oklahoma law.

Section 991(c) Expungement: Individuals who successfully complete a deferred sentence may be eligible for expungement under Section 991(c), provided they meet specific requirements. Juvenile Expungement: Oklahoma law also allows for the expungement of juvenile records, offering a chance for individuals to start anew after overcoming the challenges of adolescence. Victim Protective Order Expungement: Individuals who obtain a Victim Protective Order may seek expungement under certain circumstances.

Application Process:

The process of expungement in Oklahoma involves filing a petition in the district court of the county where the conviction occurred. The petition must include detailed information about the individual, the offense, and the requested relief. Additionally, supporting documentation, such as a copy of the judgment and sentence, must be submitted. The court will then review the petition and determine
whether the individual meets the eligibility criteria.

Effect of Expungement:

Upon successful expungement, the individual’s criminal record is sealed or erased, rendering it inaccessible to the public. This includes background check companies, employers and MAY include law enforcement agencies. Expungement offers individuals a chance to move forward without the burden of past mistakes, promoting rehabilitation and reintegration into society.

Understanding Oklahoma’s expungement laws is crucial for individuals seeking a fresh start after overcoming the challenges of a criminal conviction. Navigating the legal intricacies of expungement requires careful consideration of eligibility criteria, the type of expungement sought, and adherence to the prescribed application process. By providing a pathway to a clean slate, Oklahoma’s
expungement laws contribute to the broader goal of promoting rehabilitation and supporting individuals in their efforts to reintegrate into society.

Keep in mind that specific statutes for expungement may change, so it’s crucial to refer to the latest Oklahoma statutes and consult with me for the most accurate information.

Always consult with a legal professional for advice tailored to your situation. I represent people charged with crimes in Oklahoma, including Oklahoma County, Oklahoma City; Canadian County, El Reno, Yukon, Mustang; Cleveland County, Norman; Logan County, Guthrie; Grady County, Chickasha; and all other counties in Oklahoma.


To learn more about Oklahoma expungements check the following resources: