This is the first post in a series of articles which will discuss the possibility of expunging juvenile criminal records related to sex offenses in Peoria and other Illinois areas. I have previously written on the issue of sealing or expunging criminal records as they relate to adults. Many residents of our state, however, do not realize that a youth’s records are not automatically expunged once they turn eighteen years of age. I feel it is necessary to address this topic so that people may better understand their situation. The goal of my coming articles is to provide information which will help people understand both their rights and their options. It is also my goal to provide information which will assist you with the selection of any attorney. If you or a loved one are in need of assistance then contact my office today to speak with a lawyer.
I will be addressing several topics over my coming articles. Some of the subjects which I will analyze include:
- Illinois law in regards to the handling of juvenile records
- The process of expunging a sex offense which occurred when one was a juvenile
- The benefits of expunging one’s juvenile record
- Why one should retain an attorney to assist them with their expungement
I am addressing these topics for multiple reasons. First, while Illinois does automatically seal juvenile records once one reaches the age of maturity, our state does not automatically expunge them. This means that such records can still show up in certain background checks, law enforcement inquiries, and more. Second, the process of expunging a sexual related offense can involve multiple steps. These include all the tasks necessary to prepare a petition as well as going through the process. Third, going through this process can help to ensure greater opportunity in the future. Finally, retaining an attorney can help to ensure that the process is handled correctly.
One point I cannot stress enough is that one should expunge their records as soon as possible if they are eligible to do so. The detriment of not doing so can be extreme. While such records are sealed from the public, they can still be relevant to law enforcement or other court proceedings. This can result in one having a tougher time with the legal system than is necessary. Moreover, the existence of such records can make it difficult, if not disqualifying altogether, to obtain professional licenses. By starting the process now, you can potentially open up more possibilities in your future.
Contact my office today to speak with a Peoria expungement lawyer. I am a former prosecutor who is familiar with the workings of our local court system and I am ready to assist you. I also serve the Illinois counties of Fulton, Knox, LaSalle, Marshall, Mason, McLean, Putnam, Rock Island, Schuyler, Stark, Tazewell, and Woodford. I also handle federal cases in Urbana.