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Dallas legal agencies host expo to help you clear your name

Dallas legal agencies host expo to help you clear your name

handcuffs, arrested
Some people will get a do-over. Deal.org

As part of an effort in cities across Texas, Dallas is hosting an Expunction Expo, which will help clear arrests from your record, as long as you meet certain qualifications.

Expunction is a procedure wherein arrests and charges can be removed from your record.

This year's Expo is at Jubilee Park Community Center, 907 Bank St., Dallas. It'll be the third Expunction Expo. Calling it an expo makes it sound fun. The concept debuted in 2017.

"We want to help people who qualify for an expunction to get a fresh start so they can become productive and contributing members of society," says Criminal District Attorney John Creuzot in a statement.

"Many people may not be able to obtain gainful employment, attend college, or serve in the military because of something on their record that can be eliminated," Creuzot says. "This is an opportunity for them to change their lives for the better."

The Dallas County District Attorney's Office is hosting the expo in partnership with a variety of local agencies, including the Public Defender's Office and the Dallas County District Clerk's Office.

Local volunteer attorneys, as well as students from the University of North Texas (UNT) Dallas College of Law and the Southern Methodist University (SMU) Dedman School of Law also participate, as do Dallas County District judges and the Dallas City Attorney Community Courts.

Since its inception in 2017, this event has helped clear more than 400 criminal records.

Per Texas statute, people who have offenses on their criminal record may qualify for an expunction if any of the following apply:

  • They were arrested, but a charge was never filed with the district attorney's office or was no billed by the grand jury.
  • They have a criminal charge that was dismissed.
  • They were acquitted on their charge by a judge, jury, or appellate court.
  • They were convicted of a crime but later pardoned by the governor of Texas or the president of the United States.

You're not eligible for an expunction if:

  • your case is still pending
  • you were convicted, even if you just paid a fine
  • you were placed on probation, community supervision, or deferred adjudication, even if your case was later dismissed.

Anyone who is eligible for an expunction must pre-register between July 8-July 28 at www.dallascounty.org/expunction; or in person at one of these designated locations:

  • Clerk’s Office, Frank Crowley Courthouse
  • Clerk’s Office, George Allen Courthouse
  • City of Dallas Community Courts

If you have an arrest that's eligible for expunction, you're sent an invite to meet with a volunteer attorney at a pre-qualification clinic on Saturday, September 14.

If you win, you're invited to a graduation ceremony on Saturday, December 7.

Only Dallas County offenses will be considered.