Criminal Record Expungement Law in Missouri
Missouri criminal record expungement law changes will take effect January 1, 2018. Here are some basics about the law:
- The crimes listed in Subsection 2 do not qualify to be expunged.
- If your charge meets the requirements to be expunged, you must wait 7 years for a felony, and 3 years for a misdemeanor, municipal offense, or infraction.
- Your record needs to be clean for that entire time (other than violations that are non-criminal traffic violations listed in Chapter 304 and Chapter 307.)
- If your petition to expunge is successful, the court will order all records related to your case be destroyed. The courts will be the only ones with a record and it will be kept confidential.
- If your petition to expunge is successful, all the rights you lost because of your conviction will be reinstated.
- If your petition to expunge is dismissed, you must wait at least 1 year before re-filing.
- While unlimited infractions may be expunged, you are limited to one felony expungement and up to two misdemeanor expungements.
Section 610.140 of the Missouri Revised Statutes - Expungement of certain criminal records, petition, contents, procedure.
610.140.1, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 1
Notwithstanding any other provision of law and subject to the provisions of this section, any person may apply to any court in which such person was charged or found guilty of any offenses, violations, or infractions for an order to expunge records of such arrest, plea, trial, or conviction. Subject to the limitations of subsection 12 of this section, a person may apply to have one or more offenses, violations, or infractions expunged if such offense, violation, or infraction occurred within the state of Missouri and was prosecuted under the jurisdiction of a Missouri municipal, associate circuit, or circuit court, so long as such person lists all the offenses, violations, and infractions he or she is seeking to have expunged in the petition and so long as all such offenses, violations, and infractions are not excluded under subsection 2 of this section. If the offenses, violations, or infractions were charged as counts in the same indictment or information or were committed as part of the same course of criminal conduct, the person may include all the related offenses, violations, and infractions in the petition, regardless of the limits of subsection 12 of this section, and the petition shall only count as a petition for expungement of the highest level violation or offense contained in the petition for the purpose of determining future eligibility for expungement.
610.140.2, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 2
The following offenses, violations, and infractions shall not be eligible for expungement under this section:
(1) Any class A felony offense;
(2) Any dangerous felony as that term is defined in section 556.061;
(3) Any offense that requires registration as a sex offender;
(4) Any felony offense where death is an element of the offense;
(5) Any felony offense of assault; misdemeanor or felony offense of domestic assault; or felony offense of kidnapping;
(6) Any offense listed, or previously listed, in chapter 566 or section 105.454, 105.478, 115.631, 130.028, 188.030, 188.080, 191.677, 194.425, 217.360, 217.385, 334.245, 375.991, 389.653, 455.085, 455.538, 557.035, 565.084, 565.085, 565.086, 565.095, 565.120, 565.130, 565.156, 565.200, 565.214, 566.093, 566.111, 566.115, 568.020, 568.030, 568.032, 568.045, 568.060, 568.065, 568.080, 568.090, 568.175, 569.030, 569.035, 569.040, 569.050, 569.055, 569.060, 569.065, 569.067, 569.072, 569.100, 569.160, 570.025, 570.030, 570.090, 570.100, 570.130, 570.180, 570.223, 570.224, 570.310, 571.020, 571.030, 571.060, 571.063, 571.070, 571.072, 571.150, 574.070, 574.105, 574.115, 574.120, 574.130, 575.040, 575.095, 575.153, 575.155, 575.157, 575.159, 575.195, 575.200, 575.210, 575.220, 575.230, 575.240, 575.350, 575.353, 577.078, 577.703, 577.706, 578.008, 578.305, 578.310, or 632.520;
(7) Any offense eligible for expungement under section 577.054 or 610.130;
(8) Any intoxication-related traffic or boating offense as defined in section 577.001, or any offense of operating an aircraft with an excessive blood alcohol content or while in an intoxicated condition;
(9) Any ordinance violation that is the substantial equivalent of any offense that is not eligible for expungement under this section; and
(10) Any violations of any state law or county or municipal ordinance regulating the operation of motor vehicles when committed by an individual who has been issued a commercial driver's license or is required to possess a commercial driver's license issued by this state or any other state.
610.140.3, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 3
The petition shall name as defendants all law enforcement agencies, courts, prosecuting or circuit attorneys, municipal prosecuting attorneys, central state repositories of criminal records, or others who the petitioner has reason to believe may possess the records subject to expungement for each of the offenses, violations, and infractions listed in the petition. The court's order of expungement shall not affect any person or entity not named as a defendant in the action.
610.140.4, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 4
The petition shall be dismissed if it does not include the following information:
(1) The petitioner's:
(a) Full name;
(d) Driver's license number, if applicable; and
(e) Current address;
(2) Each offense, violation, or infraction for which the petitioner is requesting expungement;
(3) The approximate date the petitioner was charged for each offense, violation, or infraction; and
(4) The name of the county where the petitioner was charged for each offense, violation, or infraction and if any of the offenses, violations, or infractions occurred in a municipality, the name of the municipality for each offense, violation, or infraction; and
(5) The case number and name of the court for each offense.
610.140.5, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 5
The clerk of the court shall give notice of the filing of the petition to the office of the prosecuting attorney, circuit attorney, or municipal prosecuting attorney that prosecuted the offenses, violations, or infractions listed in the petition. If the prosecuting attorney, circuit attorney, or municipal prosecuting attorney objects to the petition for expungement, he or she shall do so in writing within thirty days after receipt of service. Unless otherwise agreed upon by the parties, the court shall hold a hearing within sixty days after any written objection is filed, giving reasonable notice of the hearing to the petitioner. If no objection has been filed within thirty days after receipt of service, the court may set a hearing on the matter and shall give reasonable notice of the hearing to each entity named in the petition. At any hearing, the court may accept evidence and hear testimony on, and may consider, the following criteria for each of the offenses, violations, or infractions listed in the petition for expungement:
(1) It has been at least seven years if the offense is a felony, or at least three years if the offense is a misdemeanor, municipal offense, or infraction, from the date the petitioner completed any authorized disposition imposed under section 557.011 for each offense, violation, or infraction listed in the petition;
(2) The person has not been found guilty of any other misdemeanor or felony, not including violations of the traffic regulations provided under chapters 304 and 307, during the time period specified for the underlying offense, violation, or infraction in subdivision (1) of this subsection;
(3) The person has satisfied all obligations relating to any such disposition, including the payment of any fines or restitution;
(4) The person does not have charges pending;
(5) The petitioner's habits and conduct demonstrate that the petitioner is not a threat to the public safety of the state; and
(6) The expungement is consistent with the public welfare and the interests of justice warrant the expungement.
A pleading by the petitioner that such petitioner meets the requirements of subdivisions (5) and (6) of this subsection shall create a rebuttable presumption that the expungement is warranted so long as the criteria contained in subdivisions (1) to (4) of this subsection are otherwise satisfied. The burden shall shift to the prosecuting attorney, circuit attorney, or municipal prosecuting attorney to rebut the presumption. A victim of an offense, violation, or infraction listed in the petition shall have an opportunity to be heard at any hearing held under this section, and the court may make a determination based solely on such victim's testimony.
610.140.6, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 6
A petition to expunge records related to an arrest for an eligible offense, violation, or infraction may be made in accordance with the provisions of this section to a court of competent jurisdiction in the county where the petitioner was arrested no earlier than three years from the date of arrest; provided that, during such time, the petitioner has not been charged and the petitioner has not been found guilty of any misdemeanor or felony offense.
610.140.7, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 6
If the court determines that such person meets all the criteria set forth in subsection 5 of this section for each of the offenses, violations, or infractions listed in the petition for expungement, the court shall enter an order of expungement. In all cases under this section, the court shall issue an order of expungement or dismissal within six months of the filing of the petition. A copy of the order of expungement shall be provided to the petitioner and each entity possessing records subject to the order, and, upon receipt of the order, each entity shall close any record in its possession relating to any offense, violation, or infraction listed in the petition, in the manner established by section 610.120. The records and files maintained in any administrative or court proceeding in a municipal, associate, or circuit court for any offense, infraction, or violation ordered expunged under this section shall be confidential and only available to the parties or by order of the court for good cause shown. The central repository shall request the Federal Bureau of Investigation to expunge the records from its files.
610.140.8, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 8
The order shall not limit any of the petitioner's rights that were restricted as a collateral consequence of such person's criminal record, and such rights shall be restored upon issuance of the order of expungement. Except as otherwise provided under this section, the effect of such order shall be to restore such person to the status he or she occupied prior to such arrests, pleas, trials, or convictions as if such events had never taken place. No person as to whom such order has been entered shall be held thereafter under any provision of law to be guilty of perjury or otherwise giving a false statement by reason of his or her failure to recite or acknowledge such arrests, pleas, trials, convictions, or expungement in response to an inquiry made of him or her and no such inquiry shall be made for information relating to an expungement, except the petitioner shall disclose the expunged offense, violation, or infraction to any court when asked or upon being charged with any subsequent offense, violation, or infraction. The expunged offense, violation, or infraction may be considered a prior offense in determining a sentence to be imposed for any subsequent offense that the person is found guilty of committing.
610.140.9, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 9
Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection 8 of this section to the contrary, a person granted an expungement shall disclose any expunged offense, violation, or infraction when the disclosure of such information is necessary to complete any application for:
(1) A license, certificate, or permit issued by this state to practice such individual's profession;
(2) Any license issued under chapter 313 or permit issued under chapter 571;
(3) Paid or unpaid employment with an entity licensed under chapter 313, any state-operated lottery, or any emergency services provider, including any law enforcement agency;
(4) Employment with any federally insured bank or savings institution or credit union or an affiliate of such institution or credit union for the purposes of compliance with 12 U.S.C. Section 1829 and 12 U.S.C. Section 1785;
(5) Employment with any entity engaged in the business of insurance or any insurer for the purpose of complying with 18 U.S.C. Section 1033, 18 U.S.C. Section 1034, or other similar law which requires an employer engaged in the business of insurance to exclude applicants with certain criminal convictions from employment; or
(6) Employment with any employer that is required to exclude applicants with certain criminal convictions from employment due to federal or state law, including corresponding rules and regulations.
An employer shall notify an applicant of the requirements under subdivisions (4) to (6) of this subsection. Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, an expunged offense, violation, or infraction shall not be grounds for automatic disqualification of an applicant, but may be a factor for denying employment, or a professional license, certificate, or permit; except that, an offense, violation, or infraction expunged under the provisions of this section may be grounds for automatic disqualification if the application is for employment under subdivisions (4) to (6) of this subsection.
610.140.10, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 10
A person who has been granted an expungement of records pertaining to a misdemeanor or felony offense, an ordinance violation, or an infraction may answer "no" to an employer's inquiry into whether the person has ever been convicted of a crime if, after the granting of the expungement, the person has no public record of a misdemeanor or felony offense, an ordinance violation, or an infraction. The person, however, shall answer such an inquiry affirmatively and disclose his or her criminal convictions, including any offense or violation expunged under this section or similar law, if the employer is required to exclude applicants with certain criminal convictions from employment due to federal or state law, including corresponding rules and regulations.
610.140.11, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 11
If the court determines that the petitioner has not met the criteria for any of the offenses, violations, or infractions listed in the petition for expungement or the petitioner has knowingly provided false information in the petition, the court shall enter an order dismissing the petition. Any person whose petition for expungement has been dismissed by the court for failure to meet the criteria set forth in subsection 5 of this section may not refile another petition until a year has passed since the date of filing for the previous petition.
610.140.12, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 12
A person may be granted more than one expungement under this section provided that during his or her lifetime, the total number of offenses, violations, or infractions for which orders of expungement are granted to the person shall not exceed the following limits:
(1) Not more than two misdemeanor offenses or ordinance violations that have an authorized term of imprisonment; and
(2) Not more than one felony offense.
A person may be granted expungement under this section for any number of infractions. Nothing in this section shall prevent the court from maintaining records to ensure that an individual has not exceeded the limitations of this subsection. Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit or impair in any way the subsequent use of any record expunged under this section of any arrests or findings of guilt by a law enforcement agency, criminal justice agency, prosecuting attorney, circuit attorney, or municipal prosecuting attorney, including its use as a prior offense, violation, or infraction.
610.140.13, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 13
The court shall make available a form for pro se petitioners seeking expungement, which shall include the following statement: "I declare under penalty of perjury that the statements made herein are true and correct to the best of my knowledge, information, and belief."
610.140.14, Missouri Revised Statutes - Subsection 14
Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit or restrict the availability of expungement to any person under any other law.