Don’t let a criminal background check make your future more difficult.

Having a criminal record can make it harder to find a good job.  Even when the criminal charges against you were dismissed, a record of the charge can show up on your criminal background check.  If an employer sees that you were charged with a crime, she or he might not want to hire you, even if the case was dismissed! NicholsonPham handles expungements.

North Carolina law might allow you to expunge or “erase” that criminal charge.  We can show you how.

How do I get an Expungement?

To get an expungement, you must petition a judge. NicholsonPham attorneys can petition the judge for you and make sure that all the paperwork is completed correctly.  We handle expungements in Durham, Wake and Orange counties.

Is an Expungement expensive?

Our fees for expungements are reasonable and we offer payment plans.  In addition to attorney fees, the Clerk of Court will sometimes charge a civil fee.

How long does an Expungement take?

It can take up to twelve months for an expungement to go through in North Carolina, although most of the time, it’s much quicker.

To understand expungements, it’s helpful to understand the difference between a charge and a conviction.

What is a charge?

A criminal charge is a formal accusation of wrongdoing against you by the State of North Carolina.  If you were arrested for a crime, you were charged. Not all charges result in jail, though. Sometimes, you can be charged without going to jail.  You were charged if you were ordered to go to court to answer for a crime.

A charge is just an accusation and in North Carolina, you are innocent until proven guilty.

What is a conviction?

A conviction is when a judge or jury says “guilty” and orders a sentence.  If you pled guilty in court and the judge told you to pay a fine and costs of court, then you were convicted of that charge.

Can I get an Expungement if the case was dismissed?

If you were charged with a crime in Durham, Wake or Orange County, but NOT convicted, then NicholsonPham can petition to expunge the record.  

Can I get an Expungement if I was convicted?

Even if you pled guilty or were found guilty of a non-violent felony or misdemeanor, North Carolina will sometimes allow you to expunge a conviction that happened in your past, so long as you have demonstrated “good moral character” since the time you were convicted. For misdemeanors, you have to wait five years. For felonies, you have to wait ten years. Call us to speak with an attorney at NicholsonPham to determine if your old conviction is eligible for an expungement. We can talk with you over the phone or you can make an appointment to speak with one of us at our office in downtown Durham.

Who can expunge a charge

In North Carolina, you can expunge evidence that you were charged with a crime.  If you apply and the court allows it, all evidence that you were charged is erased from your record.  The clerk’s office destroys the file and the officer that charged you is also ordered to destroy any copies that he or she has.  The attorneys at NicholsonPham work with the judge and clerks of court in Orange, Durham and Wake counties to make sure that expungements go smoothly.

Can I expunge a charge even if I've been convited of other crimes?


Call: (919) 883-4900