One of Stephanie’s clients had his case dismissed today. He was charged in Denver municipal court with a domestic violence charge. After a personal meeting with the prosecutor, at which Stephanie presented information her client had provided, the City decided to dismiss the case.
Because the case was completely dismissed, the client may immediately file a petition to seal the records related to the case, including the arrest record. Many clients worry about how criminal records can impact their employment and living situations. When records are sealed, the public cannot see the records and, in most instances, the person whose records are sealed may legally act as though the case never existed. Sealing of these records does not happen automatically. Specific paperwork must be filed as a separate case in order to have the records sealed.
In municipal court, records may be sealed even after a conviction, but there is a waiting period, so the records cannot be immediately sealed. In addition, if a person commits any new offense during the waiting period, it may prevent sealing of the records. In contrast, when a case is outright dismissed, the records may be immediately sealed upon filing of the appropriate paperwork.