What does it mean to expunge a San Diego DUI?

How does a San Diego DUI expungement help me?

A legal withdrawal of plea, an entry of not guilty, and a court dismissal of a San Diego DUI or Drunk Driving conviction can be very useful.

If the petition is granted, you are released from all penalties and disabilities resulting from the San Diego DUI conviction.

Will I need to go to Court?

No. San Diego DUI lawyer Rick Mueller handles all San Diego Superior Court work for you.

Why Expunge my record? Why spend the money?

There are a number of reasons to do so such as employment or licensing. However, at least half of the clients want to expunge their record as final closure on a singular discretion or an old mistake, perfect for peace of mind.

How Long Does A San Diego DUI expungement Take?

Misdemeanors: Most expungements for misdemeanors take at least several months to complete from the time the application is filed. This does not include the time needed to research all records and process the application. The more prepared you are as to the San Diego DUI information needed (Case number, date of birth, conviction date, probation length, Vehicle Code charge number, and San Diego county court location) the quicker the application can be processed. If it is necessary to search the court records for information, it may take additional time.

If I am still on probation for a San Diego DUI, do I need to get off probation before filing a petition to dismiss (expunge)?

Probation must be over prior to filing for an expungement.   In certain situations, San Diego DUI probation can be terminated prior to the expiration of the original probation period.  Once misdemeanor DUI probation has been terminated, expungement can go forward.

Click here to find out how to get off probation after a San Diego DUI.

Click here for the steps to get off San Diego DUI probation.

What is the actual San Diego DUI “expungement” procedure? 

A San Diego DUI expungement is an important legal procedure to:

(a) withdraw a DUI plea,

(b) obtain an Order setting aside the DUI conviction,

(c) enter a plea of Not Guilty, and

(d) obtain an Order of dismissal of the accusatory DUI pleading,

via a successful petition to the Court for review of a San Diego DUI conviction.

The San Diego Court will first look at:

  • If the term of San Diego Superior Court probation was successfully completed & concluded;
  • That all fines, restitution and reimbursement ordered by the court have been paid and everything ordered by the court was completed in a timely manner;
  • That the petitioner is not now on probation for another offense;
  • That the petitioner has no new pending California cases;

The Court then may allow the petitioner to withdraw his or plea or finding of guilt or no contest, and thereafter orders the San Diego DUI case dismissed.

What about applying for jobs?

If Private Employers ask if you have ever been convicted of a crime, you generally can respond with “NO”.

(Each question is different so please first contact an attorney before answering any specific question, in every case and for every form.)

On questions by Government Employers or Government Licensing Applications if you are asked if you have ever been convicted of a crime, you must disclose the expunged case.

Can employers consider a DUI conviction that has been expunged (dismissed)?

In most San Diego DUI cases, the answer is NO!

Once your San Diego DUI case is expunged (dismissed), it is no longer considered a California DUI conviction and California Labor Code 432.7(a) prohibits employers from asking an applicant to disclose information concerning a California DUI arrest or detention that did not result in California DUI conviction, or information concerning a referral to, and participation in, any pretrial or posttrial diversion program, nor shall any employer seek from any source whatsoever, or utilize, as a factor in determining any condition of employment including hiring. An employer who intentionally violates this section can be liable for a misdemeanor, plus fines, and attorney’s fees. This section does not apply to criminal justice agencies, health facilities, and has a few other narrow exceptions.

What does the California Expungement law say?

Penal Code Section 1203.4 provides in part:

“[Petitioner shall]…be permitted by the court to withdraw his or her plea of guilty or plea of nolo contendere and enter a plea of not guilty; or, if he or she has been convicted after a plea of not guilty, the court shall set aside the verdict of guilty; and, in either case, the court shall thereupon dismiss the accusations or information against the defendant and except as noted below, he or she shall thereafter be released from all penalties and disabilities resulting from the offense of which he or she has been convicted, except…”

(1) The order does not relieve the defendant of the obligation to disclose the aforementioned conviction in response to any direct question contained in any questionnaire or application for public offense, for licensure by an state or local agency, or for contracting with the California State Lottery.

(2) The order does not permit the defendant to own, possess, or have custody or control of any firearm capable of being concealed upon the person, and it does not prevent conviction of the defendant under California Penal Code section 12021.

What else doesn’t a San Diego DUI Expungement do?

Your dismissed San Diego DUI conviction can still be used to increase your punishment in future DUI cases. The offense is “priorable”.

It can still be used to enhance penalties & increase punishment should you get another DUI.

It can be used to try to put you in jail or increase the length of a DMV suspension.

Does this erase all records and destroy the San Diego Court file?

No. An expungement changes and updates the disposition of the case to reflect a dismissal under 1203.4 of the Penal Code. This means the Court file, the California Department of Justice, and the FBI update their files to show the case has been ordered dismissed by the Court.

What happens after my DUI record is expunged by my San Diego DUI attorney?

You will receive a San Diego court order setting aside your San Diego DUI conviction and dismissing your San Diego DUI case. California DUI / Criminal record databases should be updated to reflect that your San Diego DUI conviction was set aside and your San Diego DUI case was dismissed. Your San Diego DUI lawyer will help get that for you.

Will the expunged San Diego California DUI show-up when someone does a background check?

That usually depends on the kind of background check that is done.

A “hard” search generally involves you authorizing a government agency to release your records and you providing fingerprints. This type of search will show that there was a San Diego DUI court case, a San Diego DUI / charge of whatever you were charged with, and a dismissal with no finding of guilt and no San Diego DUI conviction.

A “soft” search, which is often done by most employers, utilizes a private sector company to search for convictions. This type of search will in most cases show nothing at all, in some cases it will show that there was a court case, a San Diego DUI or charge of whatever you were convicted of, and a dismissal with no finding of guilt and no San Diego DUI conviction.

Please note that even in the event of an expungement, both California DMV and Prosecutors will have access to California DUI prior records in order to enhance possible penalties against you should you get another California DUI. Always consult a San Diego DUI Attorney in these matters.

Will the expunged San Diego California DUI help me get into Canada?

A dismissal (expungement) will help you get into Canada.  See this page for details.

What is needed to Begin the process in San Diego, California?

There is an affordable attorney fee for the Petition to Dismiss per 1203.4 (expungement) plus $60 payable to “Superior Court” for their court fee.

If interested, San Diego DUI attorney Rick Mueller needs:

    • San Diego Superior Court Case number, 
    • Date of birth, 
    • Conviction date, 
    • Length of probation term,
    • Vehicle Code charge number, 
    • San Diego county court location or address,
    • Reason(s) you need to be off probation and/or have charge dismissed/expunged, and
    • Your current address.

Based on valid reason(s) why you need the case dismissed/expunged, a Draft Declaration would be prepared and sent to you to be signed.

You can buy and instantly print your ‘DL Driving Record’ online for $2 at https://www.dmv.ca.gov/online/dr/welcome.htm .  It shows your record if you’re just curious as to what’s on your driving record and you don’t feel like waiting in line at the California DMV.  It shows departmental actions, convictions, failures to appear, accidents, etc.
Or San Diego DUI lawyer Rick Mueller can order you a free Motor Vehicle Report (MVR) if you provide:
    • Your full legal name
    • Date of birth
    • CA Driver’s License number (if you do not have a CA license, then the number for your state)

Email Rick@sandiegodui.com to provide your email address to receive a proposal, the draft declaration and all information needed to begin the DUI expungement process.

DISCLAIMER: Please be aware this page is NOT a comprehensive analysis of all expungement law, types of answers to types of questions asked, or of all types of remedies that may be available to you. This is NOT intended to be legal advice, and a consultation with an Attorney is always first recommended and before answering any question.

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