What Felonies Can Be Expunged in Minnesota?
What Felonies Can Be Expunged in Minnesota?
A criminal record, especially a felony, can create harsh consequences for many years. Potential employers and landlords frequently base their decision to hire or rent on past criminal convictions. Expungement is a way to avoid having your future negatively affected by a past criminal act. It is a court-ordered process in which the legal record of a specific arrest or a criminal conviction is "sealed.” Sealing the record means that it is erased so that the public can not view it. An expungement can restore various freedoms to an individual, but it is not a simple process.
Felonies That Can be Expunged
Not all felonies are eligible for expungement, however, the State of Minnesota lists 50 felonies that may potentially be expunged. For a felony violation of any offense listed below, you must not have been convicted of a new crime for at least five years following the discharge of your original felony crime. In instances where registration as a sex offender was/is required, expungement is never allowed even if you are no longer required to register.
- Altering a livestock certificate.
- Insurance regulations.
- Certification for title on a watercraft.
- Controlled substance in the fifth degree or sale of a simulated controlled substance.
- Certificate of title false information or an accident resulting in great bodily harm.
- Voting violations.
- False bill of lading.
- False declaration in assistance application.
- Willful evasion of fuel tax.
- Failure to affix stamp on scheduled substances.
- Unlawful acts involving liquor.
- Prize notices and solicitations.
- Failure to control a regulated animal.
- Gambling regulations.
- Leaving the state to evade establishment of paternity.
- Escape from civil commitment for mental illness.
- Failure to appear in court.
- Theft of $5,000 or less or another theft offense sentenced under the same provision, along with theft of $1.000.00 or less with risk of bodily harm.
- Bringing stolen goods into the state.
- Metal dealer receiving stolen goods.
- Possession or use of scanning device or reencoder, possession or sale of stolen counterfeit check, or mail theft.
- Receiving stolen goods.
- Dishonored check over $500.00.
- Embezzlement of public funds $2500.00 or less.
- Rustling and livestock theft.
- Wildfire arson.
- Negligent fires.
- Criminal damage to property.
- Assaulting or harming a police horse.
- Aggravated forgery, forgery, check forgery of $2,500.00 or less, obtaining a signature by false pretense, recording/filing a forged instrument, or fraudulent statements.
- Lottery fraud.
- Fraudulent driver’s license and identification card.
- Discharm of a firearm, silencer, or furnishing a firearm to a minor.
- Duty to render aid.
- Tampering with a fire alarm.
- Interference with privacy; subsequent violation or minor victim.
- Interference with cable communications system.
- Financial transaction card fraud.
- Residential mortgage fraud.
- Bribery of a participant or official in a contest.
- Interference with transit operator.
- Computer theft.
- Telecommunications and information services fraud.
- Cellular counterfeiting.
- Counterfeited intellectual property.
- Movie pirating.
- Transfer pistol to minor, pistol without permit; subsequent violation, transfer of pistol to ineligible person, or,
- Rifle or shotgun in public by minor.
Expungements are Not Guaranteed
Even if your case is eligible for expungement, the expungement is not guaranteed. There are many forms to complete and a Judge will then need to determine if the benefit of receiving an expungement is greater than the disadvantage it would be for the public to not have access to your criminal record. The judge’s decision is based on:
- The severity of the crime.
- Risk the petitioner poses to society.
- Length of time since the crime occurred.
- Any steps the petitioner has taken toward rehabilitation.
- Reasons for the expungement request (e.g. obtaining employment, housing, or other necessities).
- Petitioner’s criminal record, employment record, and community involvement.
- Outstanding restitution (if any).
- Other factors deemed relevant by the court.
Do I Need an Attorney to Expunge My Felony in Minnesota?
Expungement is a complicated process. While it can be navigated alone, it is strongly encouraged to secure legal advice from an experienced expungement attorney, Contact Bruno Law for a consultation to discuss your case and whether you qualify for an expungement. You have a lot at stake, and we will work to ensure the best possible results to protect your future.