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Can misdemeanor DUI/DWI convictions be expunged in Louisiana?

by | May 25, 2016 | dui expungement

Among the many impacts a DWI/DUI conviction has on a person is the mark it leaves on their record. An important thing for a person convicted of a Louisiana DWI/DUI offense to know is that they may not have to have the conviction on their public record for the rest of their life.

Depending on a convicted individual’s situation, they may be able to request an expungement of the records related to their conviction. DUI/DWI convictions are among the types of convictions that can potentially be expunged here in Louisiana. Today, we will discuss the requirements for being eligible to request an expungement of a misdemeanor DUI/DWI conviction in the state.

Under Louisiana law, for individuals convicted of most types of misdemeanors, they can request an expungement once five years have passed since they completed their sentence for the conviction as long as they meet both of the following requirements:

  • They are not currently facing any felony charges.
  • They have not had any felony convictions over the five-year period.

Alternatively, a prosecution dismissal and conviction set-aside could qualify a person convicted of a misdemeanor for an expungement.

As a note, a person generally cannot receive a misdemeanor expungement if they have had another misdemeanor expunged within the past five years (there is a narrow exception to this).

There are a few types of misdemeanor offenses that are outright ineligible for expungement here in Louisiana. Misdemeanor DWI/DUI crimes are not among these offenses. However, state law does add an extra requirement for qualifying for an expungement when the misdemeanor conviction for which the expungement is being sought is a DWI/DUI conviction. This requirement is that the person must not have had a past expungement of a misdemeanor DWI/DUI conviction within the past 10 years.

It can be important for individuals who have been convicted of a DWI/DUI crime here in Louisiana to understand what expungement options they might have. Criminal defense lawyers knowledgeable in the state’s expungement laws can answer questions such individuals have about expungement eligibility and can provide guidance to such individuals when it comes to the process of requesting an expungement.