If you scour the internet in search of an answer to this question, you will find that nearly everyone says: no. Due to a quirk in the law, only more serious offenses were eligible for the California expungement process.
For years that was true. It has been a vexing issue for people with infractions on their record that cannot get them removed. People constantly asked “Why can a felon get an expungement but I can’t get one for my infraction?”
But I have good news: that is no longer the case. Governor Schwarzenegger recently signed a new law, which goes into effect on January 1, 2011.
The new law authorizes the court to expunge a former conviction for a non-vehicular infraction. Specifically, it:
So what does this mean? It means that the courts have opened up the right to an expungement in California to a much larger class of offenses. There are still exceptions, but going forward, most anyone convicted in California can file a motion for expungement after one year as long as they stay out of trouble.
I am already preparing expungements to file as soon as the new law goes into effect in January. If you have any questions about expunging an infraction in California, call my office anytime. I am happy to discuss your case without charge.