If you were arrested for a DUI in Texas, then it’s important to understand that this information becomes part of your public record until you take the right steps to try and clear your record. This means that when someone runs a background check on your name, they will be able to see that you were arrested for a DUI. Potential employers, landlords, or other important people may use this information against you if they choose to.
So is it possible to clear your record if you’ve been arrested for a DUI in Texas? The answer isn’t black and white, but there are a few options that can help increase your chances of clearing your record so that you can move on with your life.
One way you can attempt to remove a DUI from your criminal record is to try and have the charge expunged. Expungement is the process of removing the DUI from your permanent record. Texas does not make it easy to erase a DUI charge, and you have to meet particular requirements to be able to expunge a DUI in Texas. To qualify for expungement in Texas, you must meet one of the following criteria.
Even if you meet one of these five criteria, it still does not guarantee that you will have your DUI expunged. You will still have to work with an attorney to petition the courts to expunge your charge and make a case as to why you believe that your charges should be expunged based on the criteria you meet. If you are granted the expungement, then the charges will be removed from your permanent record.
If you don’t meet any of the criteria to qualify for expungement, then you have the option to petition for a DUI non-disclosure. During this process, an attorney can petition that your criminal record be sealed so that private agencies, like the ones who provide background checks for employers, cannot access your arrest information. In this case, the DUI will still appear on your criminal record. However, that information will not be publically available unless the company runs a criminal background check. In Texas, DUI non-disclosures are only available for first-time DUI offenders. You can have your first DUI hidden from public records, but for repeat offenders, there is no option to privatize this information. Also, if during the arrest, you had a child in the car, then you also can not file for a non-disclosure.
A DUI charge can be a stressful and scary time for first-offenders, but if you work with a qualified DUI attorney, then you do have options for making the situation a little bit easier to deal with in the future.
If you are arrested for a DUI, then it’s important to contact an attorney as soon as possible. Relying on internet advice can be dangerous and provide you with false information that will not help your case in court.
If you’ve been charged with a DUI in Houston, Texas, then Houston DUI Attorney Christopher T. Gore can help you through the process of having your records sealed or expunged. Call today to learn more about this process and how we can help.