Expungements in North Carolina: Can You Seal a Felony Record?

Hey, what’s up? I’m attorney Derek Gray of McMinn, Logan & Gray. We are a criminal law firm in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and this is our FAQ series. So today’s question is going to deal with expungements.

Specifically, the question is: Can you seal a felony record in Winston Salem, North Carolina?

Now the term “seal” is used in a lot of other jurisdictions. However, that will be akin to expungements in North Carolina. I have a friend who’s a criminal law attorney in D.C.; he does a ton of motions to seal. This prevents the public from seeing that criminal conviction on your record.

So the answer is yes, you can expunge certain felonies from your record. However, it is limited.

Do you want your criminal record expunged? Let’s discuss what expungements in North Carolina look like for different types of offenses committed.

Expungement for Misdemeanor Convictions

In North Carolina, we have a state law that deals with the expungement of particular felony and misdemeanor convictions. To expunge a misdemeanor conviction, there is a Petition And Order Of Expunction Form on the North Carolina Judicial Branch.

Ask your North Carolina criminal defense attorney if you qualify when you have multiple misdemeanor convictions.

Expungement for a Not-guilty Verdict

If you received a not guilty verdict, the application form is the Petition And Order Of Expunction Form under G.S. 15A-146(a2). In these circumstances, the application fee may be waived.

Expungement for a Non-violent Felony Conviction

Do you have a “non-violent” felony conviction? Have a minimum of 10 years passed since the end of your sentence or probation period? The Petition And Order Of Expunction Form under G.S. 15A-145.5 is the right one for you.

As you can see, different expungement petitions apply to different situations. Here are other helpful petition forms:

What Felonies Can Be Expunged From a Criminal Record in NC?

You only get one expungement for felony convictions, and it only applies to convictions that are levels H and I felonies, so any A through G felony is excluded from being able to be expunged from your criminal record.

So not only does it have to be an H or I felony, but it can’t be a violent felony. They can’t have anything that requires sexual registration.

There are several other excluding factors that you need to look at in the 145.5 statutes to see if your actual conviction complies with them. But all in all, the answer is yes, you can expunge a felony off of your record. However, it’s a one, and you’re done type of option.

Do You Have Multiple Felony Convictions?

Suppose you have multiple felony convictions on the same day, and they all qualify under 145.5. In that case, all those convictions will be treated as one conviction and allowed to be expunged off your record.

So to answer your question, can you seal or expunge a felony conviction off your record in Winston Salem, North Carolina—the answer is yes. The conditions your conviction must meet will be laid out in 15A-145.5.

Our Practice Areas

Whatever the charge or conviction, speak to a criminal defense attorney with experience as the Assistant District Attorney at McMinn, Logan & Gray.

Retain a Criminal Defense Attorney to Help Expunge Your Felony or Misdemeanor Conviction

I would highly advise you to reach out to an attorney who can help guide you through the expungement process in North Carolina and make sure you qualify because there is a filing fee associated with the expungement petition.

And yeah, I hope that answers your question. If you have any follow-up questions about it, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. I am an experienced expungement attorney and would love to help you with a free case review.

Author Bio

Derek M. Gray

Derek Gray is a Partner of McMinn, Logan & Gray, a North Carolina criminal defense law firm. With more than 15 years of experience in criminal defense, he has zealously represented clients in various legal matters, including DUIs, misdemeanors, felonies, domestic violence, and other criminal charges.

Derek received his Juris Doctor from the North Carolina Central School of Law in 2007 and is a member of the North Carolina State Bar Association. With his experience as a former Assistant District Attorney, he has represented more than 1,000 criminal defense clients in North Carolina and received more than 100 5-star Google ratings.

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