In Oklahoma, you may expunge arrest records, misdemeanors, and felony convictions under certain circumstances. An expungement removes a criminal offense from your record for most purposes—making it easier to get a job, housing, and an education. In 2016, Oklahoma reduced some of its waiting periods for expungements, allowing you to receive an expungement earlier than before.

Expungement of Juvenile Criminal Records

In Oklahoma, you may expunge most juvenile convictions if you receive a full pardon. If you need help with a juvenile expungement, consider contacting an experienced lawyer. 

Expungement of Adult Criminal Records

You may expunge a wide variety of criminal records in Oklahoma, including some adult felonies, misdemeanors, and arrest records. There are two primary types of expungements in Oklahoma—Section 18 and Section 991(c) expungements. You also be eligible for expungement if you were a victim of identity theft or trafficking. 

Section 18 Expungement

A Section 18 expungement fully erases a criminal record. However, only certain convictions and charges are eligible for a Section 18 expungement. They include:

  • Criminal charges that were dismissed (and will not be refiled),
  • Arrest records that did not result in criminal charges,
  • Acquitted charges,
  • Convictions that were pardoned with a finding of actual innocence,
  • Deferred misdemeanors if:
    • You have completed the terms of the deferred sentence,
    • Do not have felony convictions, and
    • At least one year has passed since the dismissal,
  • Deferred felonies if:
    • You have completed the terms of the deferred sentence,
    • Do not have any other felony convictions, and
    • At least five years have passed since the dismissal,
  • Misdemeanor convictions if:
    • Fines have been fully paid,
    • You do not have any felony convictions, and 
    • For more serious misdemeanors, at least five years have passed since the conviction,
  • One felony conviction if:
    • Convicted of a non-violent felony,
    • You were fully pardoned,
    • You have no other felony convictions,
    • You have not been convicted of a misdemeanor for 15 years, and
    • At least 10 years have passed since your felony conviction.
  • Two felony convictions if:
    • You were fully pardoned for both felonies, and
    • At least 20 years have passed since your last misdemeanor or felony conviction.

Oklahoma does not expunge most violent crimes.

Once you qualify under Section 18, you may begin the expungement process. This involves:

  • Filing a petition with the district court,
  • Notifying the appropriate criminal records agencies, and
  • Attending a court hearing.

If you need help with an expungement, consider contacting a criminal defense lawyer.

Section 991(c) Expungement

Section 991(c) “expungement” does not technically erase a criminal record. If you completed the terms of a deferred sentence, the record should be changed to “plead not guilty, charges dismissed.” Your arrest record may still be viewed publically. 
Again, a criminal defense or expungement lawyer may be able to help with the expungement process.

Associated Fees and Paperwork

Filing fees and costs vary, depending on the county. You must pay a $150 fee to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigations (OSBI) for each expungement. Other costs may include filing fees and county-based expungement fees. If you hire an expungement or criminal defense lawyer, you may also be charged for attorney fees and other costs.

Implications of a Successful Expungement

If the court grants your petition, you may lawfully state that the expunged criminal record does not exist. When most employers search your Oklahoma criminal record, the charges will not be present. Expunged records will still be available to law enforcement agencies. 

Consulting a Lawyer

In order to expunge a criminal record, you must submit specific paperwork and may have to attend a hearing. An expungement lawyer can help guide you through the expungement process and insure that you have the correct information in your request. Additionally, a lawyer can speak on your behalf during any necessary court hearings and give you the best chance of expunging your record.