Young people make mistakes, and some even establish juvenile criminal records. These records can make it difficult to move on and lead a productive life, as they appear on background check screenings.
Under Michigan law, courts can seal juvenile records under certain circumstances.
Through the expungement process, convicted individuals can petition the courts to set aside misdemeanor or felony convictions. In other words, a judge can make it so a juvenile record cannot appear on public databases. This allows these individuals to apply for educational programs as well as employment or volunteer opportunities without prejudice based on a youthful criminal conviction.
Michigan’s Clean Slate for Kids
On April 11, 2021, the state of Michigan passed House Bill 5120, which includes the Clean Slate for Kids program. Under this legislation, automatic expungement takes effect for qualifying juveniles two years after court supervision ends or upon the offender’s 18th birthday. However, certain types of crimes are ineligible for automatic expungement:
- Offenses such as arson, murder or sexual assault as shown in section 2 of the juvenile criminal code
- Criminal offenses such as felonious assault, child abuse, stalking, manslaughter, etc.
- A crime for which the prosecution tries the juvenile as an adult
- A conviction of a crime for which an adult would serve life in prison
If your juvenile case does not qualify for Clean Slate, you may still be able to pursue expungement, but the process can be tedious and time-consuming.
Unsealed juvenile records can haunt you for far too long. If you are a youthful offender who wants to do better, you deserve the opportunity to learn, grow and turn your life around.