HefBackgroundObtaining an expungement can provide a number of benefits to the recipient. Quickly learn about the key 5 benefits, as well as the eligibility requirements, from San Diego defense attorney Paul Hefley.

1. Employment:

It’s estimated that approximately 80% of employers conduct criminal background searches. It’s easy to see then that having a criminal conviction on your record can have devastating effects on your job prospects. Employers can reject job applicants who don’t accurately report their conviction history on a job application. Also, employers can fire employees who’ve been dishonest in their application materials. So even if someone already has the job he aspires to, if he failed to disclose his conviction on the application materials, he’s at risk of being found out by his employer and potentially suffering the consequences, including being terminated.

Once someone has his record expunged, however, he can lawfully answer “no” if asked whether he’s been convicted of a crime. It’s important to note that California Labor Code section 432.7 says that employers can’t even ask prospective employees about a detention or arrest that didn’t result in a conviction.

2. State Licenses:

An expungement doesn’t erase one’s record completely. The record will remain for many purposes, including sex offender registration and immigration consequences. Additionally, when one applies for public office or state licenses, such as a real estate agent license, the applicant must disclose the conviction but may answer “yes – conviction dismissed.” Even though the record isn’t completely erased and must be disclosed in the above situation(s), the applicant will still likely benefit from having had the conviction dismissed via expungement.

3. Professional/Trade Organizations

Like employers, many professional/trade organizations conduct background searches on prospective members. An expungement can help to reduce the stigma that comes with a criminal conviction, and may favorably affect one’s ability to join the organization or run for a leadership position within the organization.

4. Renting a Home/Apartment:

Like employers, landlords regularly conduct background searches on potential lessees. A criminal record could prevent you from securing a lease on the home/apartment that you’re interested in. And even if the landlord decides to rent to you, she may perceive you as a risky tenant and require a much larger upfront payment than someone who doesn’t have a criminal conviction on her record.

5. Personal Closure/Peace of Mind

Clients often feel a great sense of relief after having their record expunged. Expungement is a great way to move on from one’s past and finally close that chapter in one’s life.


You may be eligible for expungement, if you:

  • successfully completed probation or were discharged before the end of your probationary period;
  • are not serving a sentence or on probation for any other offense; and
  • have not been charged with any other offense.

Ready to Get Started?

If you have a criminal conviction on your record that you’d like to have expunged, our San Diego Law Office is ready to help. Please contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.