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How Can I Seal My Arrest Record for Drugs?

If you have previous charges for being under the influence of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, or possession of or use of any other drug, you can possibly have your arrest record for these charges sealed. We explain more about sealing your arrest record below.

In California, it is standard practice for police agencies to arrest and jail a person if law enforcement officers stop them and conclude they are under of influence of drugs or possess drugs and are unable to care for their own safety. A conviction for drug charges can affect a person for the rest of their life. Although law enforcement isn’t necessarily required to arrest a person in the situations above, once an officer subjectively determines a person is under the influence or possesses drugs, that person will more than likely be arrested.

If a person is arrested for a drug charge, they will usually be booked (i.e. fingerprinted and photographed at the jail). This arrest record will remain with them forever, unless they have their arrest record sealed by the court.

At the Law Office of Ivan O.B. Morse, we have represented clients who have been accused of being under the influence of drugs, possession of drugs, and possession drug paraphernalia. Since the enactment of California Senate Bill 393, our office has sealed the arrest records for many of these clients.

If a person is never actually convicted for a drug crime, they have the right to have their arrest record sealed. This occurs most frequently when:

  • No criminal charge is ever filed
  • The accused is offered, and successfully completes, a deferred entry of judgment
  • The charge has been dismissed before trial for another reason
  • A verdict of not guilty was reached by the jury in a criminal trial

Depending on the offense, the Statute of Limitations for Drug crimes in California can be either one year or three years. Currently, there is no time limit to bring an action requesting your arrest records be sealed.

For further information about sealing arrest records, please see California Senate Bill 393 — signed into law on October 12, 2017 by California Governor Jerry Brown.

If you or someone you know has been arrested in California for Drugs, or a different crime, and the statute of limitations expired with no charge being filed, or the conviction was dropped for any other reason, you should contact our office to discuss how to have your arrest record sealed.

Call (888) 865-0741 to talk to our Dublin criminal defense attorneys