Tennessee Expungement Law Alert

Until July 1, 2012, an expungement was not possible for criminal convictions under Tennessee Law. An amendment to the Tennessee Expungement Law takes effect July 1, 2012 allows for certain felonies and certain misdemeanors to be expunged from your criminal record. Now is the time to act to clear your criminal record.

Requirements for Eligibility

1. The petition must be filed in the county in which you were convicted.

2. You cannot have any other convictions other than the one you are expunging

3. Five years must have passed since the completion of the sentence.

4. All fines, court costs, and restitution must be paid in full.

5. The petition must be served on the District Attorney's office.

6. A hearing will be held and the judge must 'consider all evidence and weigh the interests of the Petitioner against the best interests of justice and public safety."

7. The list of eligible felonies is lengthy.

-Accessory after the fact;
-Custodial interference where person not voluntarily returned by defendant;
-Knowing dissemination of illegally recorded cellular communication;
-Theft ($501-$999)
-Forgery (up to $1,000)
-Criminal simulation (up to $1,000)
-Hindering secured creditors;
-Fraud in insolvency;
-Fraudulent use of credit card or debit card ($501-$999)
-Worthless Checks ($501-$999)
-Destruction of valuable papers ($501-$999)
-Destruction or concealment of will;
-Fraudulent or false insurance claim ($501-$999)
-Theft of trade secrets ($501-$999)
-Sale of recorded live performances without consent ($501-$999);
-Unauthorized solicitation for police, judicial or safety associations;
-Fraudulent transfer of motor vehicle with value of less than $20,000;
-Communication theft ($501-$999 (fine only));
-Home improvement fraud ($500-$1,000)
-Burglary of an auto;
-Vandalism ($501-$999)
-Utility service interruption or property damage;
-Aggravated criminal littering (2nd and 3rd offenses involving certain weight or volume);
-Violation of Tennessee Personal and Commercial Computer Act ($501-$999)
-Unsolicited bulk electronic mail ($500-$999)
-Taking telecommunication device into penal institution;
-Impersonation of licensed professional;
-Evading arrest in motor vehicle where no risk to bystanders;
-Failure to appear (felony)
-Gifts of adulterated candy or food;
-Manufacture, delivery, sale or possession of not less than ½ ounce and not more than 10 pounds of schedule VI drug marijuana (fine not greater than $1,000);
-Manufacture, delivery, sale or possession of Schedule VII drug (fine not greater than $1,000)
-Simple possession or casual exchange (3rd Offense)
-Selling glue for unlawful purpose;
-Counterfeit controlled substance;
-Unlawful drug paraphernalia use and activities

8. Some misdemeanor convictions are excluded. Here is the list of those misdemeanors.

-Assault
-Aggravated assault of public employee;
-Domestic Assault;
-Violation of protective or restraining order;
-Possession of firearm while order of protection in effect;
-Public indecency 3rd or subsequent offense;
-Indecent exposure (victim under 13 years of age) or by person in penal institution exposing to a guard;
-Violation of community supervision by sex offender not constituting offense or constituting misdemeanor;
-Soliciting minor to engage in Class E sexual offense;
-Unlawful sexual contact by authority figure;
-Fraudulent use of credit/debit card (up to $500)
-Reckless burning
-Aggravated criminal trespass of a habitation, hospital, or on the campus of any public or private school, or on railroad property;
-Coercion-abortion;
-Third or subsequent violation of "Child Rape Protection Act of 2006';
-Child abuse (where child is between ages 7-17);
-Child neglect and endangerment (where child is between ages 7-13);
-Enticing a child to purchase intoxicating liquor-purchasing alcoholic beverage for child;
-Allowing person ages 18-21 to consume alcohol on person's premises;
-Harboring a hiding or runaway child;
-Stalking;
-Unlawful dispensing of immediate methamphetamine precursor, sale of meth precursor to person on methamphetamine registry or purchase by someone on registry, possess meth precursor with intent to sell to another for unlawful use, purchase meth precursor for another for unlawful use, purchase meth precursor at different times and places to circumvent limits, and use false ID to purchase meth precursor for purpose of circumventing limits;
-Using substance or device to falsify drug test results and selling synthetic urine;
-Possession of the hallucinogenic plant Salvia Divinorum or the synthetic cannabinoids;
-Sale or possession of synthetic derivatives or analogues of methcathinone;
-Importing, preparing, distributing, processing, or appearing in obscene material or Class A misdemeanors;
-Unlawful exhibition of obscene material;
-Unlawful massage or exposure of erogenous areas;
-Possession of firearm after being convicted of misdemeanor crime of domestic violence;
-Possession of firearm while order of protection is in effect;
-Possession of firearm while prohibited by state or federal law;
-Failure of adult to report juvenile carrying gun in school;
-Nonparent providing handgun to juvenile;
-Failure to surrender handgun carry permit upon suspension;
-Violent felon owning or possessing vicious dog;
-Assault (offensive or provocative physical contact);
-Public indecency -first or second offense (punishable by $500 fine only);
-Indecent exposure (victim 13 years old or older);
-Disseminating smoking paraphernalia to minor after 3 prior violations;
-Misuse of official information by public servant;
-Disorderly conduct at funerals;
-Possession of or consuming alcoholic beverages on K-12 school premises;
-Display for sale or rental of material harmful to minors; and
-Driving under the influence of an intoxicant

9. Convictions prior to 1989 fall under another category and some before 1989 may be expunged as well.

Tennessee has given those convicted of a crime an opportunity to erase their criminal record. Laws change with each session of the Tennessee State Legislature. Now is the time to act to erase your record. If you qualify, we can help process your expungement paperwork. Contact us at [email protected] or call 615-686-2115 .