Expungement workshops will help Mississippians remove criminal offenses

A bad choice can sometimes follow you for the rest of your life.

However, the Mississippi Volunteer Lawyers Project is working with local legal associations to provide free workshops for people who want to get a past criminal offense expunged off their record.

There will be three workshops in north Mississippi next week, with one in Lee, Coahoma and Lafayette counties.

The Lafayette County expungement workshop will be held at 5 p.m., Feb. 27 at the Family Resource Center at 104 Skyline Drive, off Highway 30 in Oxford.

An expungement would erase an arrest and conviction from your record, whether it was a misdemeanor or a felony.

Once you receive an expungement, you can legitimately answer ‘no’ when asked if you’ve ever been convicted of a crime.

Not everyone is eligible for an expungement, neither are all crimes. However, individuals who do qualify and attend the workshop may be eligible to meet with a volunteer attorney one-on-one for free on March 23.

You might be eligible for an expungement if:

  • You were not formally charged or prosecuted within 12 months or your arrest
  • The case was dismissed
  • The charges were dropped
  • There was no disposition of the case
  • The case was remanded to file
  • You received an Order of Nolle Prosequi (Not prosecuted)
  • The case was not indicted
  • You were sentenced to pre-trial diversion
  • You were placed on non-adjudicated probation
  • You were sentenced to Drug Court

Participants must bring in a valid ID — driver’s license or a state-issued identification; copy of the criminal record and an adjudication certification that is a form that states that someone has done all the requirements to satisfy conviction or a certificate showing completion of probation. Records can be obtained from county, municipal or circuit courts where the crime was committed.

Along with MVLP, the workshops are also sponsored by the Mississippi Women Lawyers Association, Black Law Student Association at the University of Mississippi School of Law, Law Association for Women at the University of Mississippi School of Law.

For more information on MVLP or the legal clinics, please contact 601-882-5001 or visit www.mvlp.org.

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