Expunging a Driving While Intoxicated Conviction

Posted by Ryan Russman | Oct 29, 2013 | 0 Comments

A DWI conviction in New Hampshire can result in serious consequences, including long-term license losses, fines, and jail time under certain conditions. Unfortunately, once the fines have been paid and the jail time has been served, DWI convictions can also have a certain stigma attached. Many businesses utilize background checks now to review the personal history of a job applicant, including any criminal convictions. Fortunately, under certain conditions, New Hampshire law permits those convicted of a DWI to expunge the conviction.

The Requirements for DWI Expungement

In order to obtain an expungement for any criminal conviction, you must wait a period of time as required by law, which depends upon the crime. The period of time required to expunge a criminal conviction for DWI is longer than many other criminal offenses. A person convicted of a DWI or Aggravated DWI must wait for ten years from the date of conviction before filing a petition to expunge a DWI conviction.

To obtain an expungement, you or your attorney must apply for an expungement in the court where the person was convicted. The application may take place in person or by sending a notarized application the court. The person must also pay a required fee to apply. After the application is received, the court will set the date for a hearing, at which you or your attorney can argue as to why the court should expunge the conviction.

Generally, an expungement is allowed when the court determines that it is in the best interest of the public welfare or will help with your rehabilitation. The court may take into account the seriousness of your conviction, the sentence that was imposed, and your record since your conviction, among other factors.

The Effect of an DUI Expungement

Once an expungement is approved, the DWI conviction will not be erased. However, it will be marked on your record as having been expunged, and you must be treated as if you have never been convicted. An expunged DWI conviction may only be used against you in the future for purposes of sentencing in a new Aggravated DWI case.

Any driver who wishes to have a DWI expunged should contact an attorney who is experienced in dealing with DWI expungements. An expungement will allow you to obtain a clean record and remove any potential obstacles that a DWI conviction may create.

About the Author

Ryan Russman

Attorney Ryan Russman has dedicated his career to fighting for the rights of New Hampshire citizens. His practice, based in Exeter (Rockingham County) New Hampshire, is limited to cases involving DWI and DUI, other motor vehicle and criminal cases, and many cases involving personal injury. He is, however, best known as one of New Hampshire's leading legal authorities on DWI.


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