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How to Get a Felony Off Your Record in Kentucky

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A felony has a big impact on a person’s life and if you live in Kentucky, you’ve come here trying to find out how to get the felony off your record.  Realize that with all felony records, there are three options you can take.  1) Expunge Your Record2) Seal Your Record,3) Request a Pardon of Your RecordThe problem though is that all states don’t offer all three of these options. But before we get into what Kentucky offers, let’s review what each of these options actually mean.

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Expungement

If you get your record expunged in Kentucky it’s as if your arrest and/or charges never happened. Your record is completely destroyed, including all physical and public records. When asked if have a criminal record, after expungement, you can truthfully answer “no”.

Record Sealing

Sealing your record in Kentucky is similar to expungement, but your record still exists in a limited form. The public does not have access to your record, but there are some exceptions. Your records can still be accessed by law enforcement and the courts. Record sealing is not as secure as expungement, but it is a reasonable alternative that is comparatively easier to obtain if your state offers it.

Pardons

If you receive a pardon in Kentucky, you still have record of your arrest or charge, but your guilt is exonerated. That is, you have proven that you are rehabilitated and forgiven for your crimes. You can also get relief in terms of having various rights restored, such as your right to vote. The requirements for pardons vary between states, but typically there is a lot of documentation required, and includes lengthy waiting periods to apply and receive a pardon.

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Things to Know Before You Start

First: It’s important to understand that every state is different in terms of what methods are available for felons to remove their record and the information below will help you understand what you can do in Kentucky.

Felony Expungement in Kentucky

Yes, it is possible to expunge your felony in Kentucky but it depends on the felony.

Sealing a Recordin Kentucky

Yes, it is possible to seal your record in Kentucky but it depends on the felony.

Getting a Pardonin Kentucky

Yes, it is possible to get a pardon of your record in Kentucky but it depends on the felony.

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Second: When trying to clear your record, you really have two options.  The first is to get a free consultation from a lawyer to see what they think of your case, and the second is to try to do all of the paperwork yourself.  

Third: We HIGHLY recommend that you get a free consultation from a lawyer prior to taking any action.  We say this because whether you want to expunge, seal, or pardon your record, it’s an extremely complicated process.  Failure to follow the process properly can end up with you being denied for the request and having to wait additional time (sometimes several years) before you can file again.  In addition, getting an expungement lawyer can increase your odds of succeeding and sometimes it’s more affordable than you think.  The first step is to click on the button below to confirm that you’re eligible for the expungement/sealing of your record.

TAKE THE ELIGIBILITY TESTQuick NavigationCan You Expunge a Felony in Kentucky?How to Expunge a Felony in KentuckyCan You Seal Your Criminal Record in Kentucky?How to Seal Your Criminal Record in KentuckyCan You Apply for a Pardon in Kentucky?How to Apply for a Pardon in Kentucky

Can You Expunge a Felony in Kentucky?

Unfortunately, under Kentucky statutes, most felony convictions cannot be expunged at this time. The only felony convictions that may be expunged are Class D drug felonies.

Certain Class D felony convictions are now able to be expunged as a result of the 2016 General Assembly passing HB 40.  These include non-violent drug offenses, fraud, and theft.

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CANNOT EXPUNGE IF…

<p><strong>Five years have not passed</strong></p><p>You cannot petition for an expungement sooner than five years after the completion of the sentence or five years after the successful completion of parole.</p><p><strong>Prior Felony Conviction</strong></p><p>If you have had a prior felony conviction, then you cannot petition to have a new felony conviction expunged.</p><p>Note: You can expunge multiple eligible Class D felonies if they are part of a series/arise from the same incident.</p><p><strong>Out of State</strong></p><p>If you have been convicted outside of the commonwealth of Kentucky, you cannot petition to have that expunged in Kentucky.  KRS 431.073 (1).</p>

How to Expunge a Felony in Kentucky

<p>An <a href=”https://courts.ky.gov/Expungement/Pages/default.aspx”>expungement certification</a> (a criminal record report to indicate what records are eligible to be expunged) is required to be filed along with the motion. The cost for an expungement certification is $40.</p><ol><li>Before you begin this process, we insist that you <a draggable=”false” href=”https://www.felonyrecordhub.com/test/expungement”>take this eligibility test</a> to determine if you’re eligible to expunge your record.</li><li>If you are eligible, you should talk to the lawyer that we refer you to so that you get an idea of the price for their services (it’s likely cheaper than you think because expungements are mostly paperwork) and see what other helpful information they can give you.</li><li>If you are <u>not</u> eligible for expungement based on our test, then you should stop here.</li><li>If you are eligible based on our test and want to do this without a lawyer, continue reading.</li><li>You can make an expungement request online, in person, or by mail.<p>To request online, register at <a href=”https://kcoj.kycourts.net/RecordRequest”>https://kcoj.kycourts.net/RecordRequest</a>.</p><ul><li>Complete the online request form and submit $40 payment for the expungement certification. (Accepted forms of payment: American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa credit cards and most debit cards.)</li></ul><p>To request in-person, you may do so at the drive-thru window at: Administrative Office of the Courts 1001 Vandalay Drive Frankfort, KY 40601 Drive-thru hours are 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday – Friday (except state holidays).</p><p>To request by mail</p><ul><li>Download the Expungement Certification Request Form at <a href=”http://courts.ky.gov/resources/legalforms/LegalForms/RU009.pdf”>http://courts.ky.gov/resources/legalforms/LegalForms/RU009.pdf</a></li><li>Complete the form.</li><li>Mail the completed form and payment to: Records Unit Administrative Office of the Courts 1001 Vandalay Drive Frankfort, KY 40601</li></ul></li></ol><p><strong>Steps to apply for Expungement in Kentucky</strong></p><p>Step 1. Request an <a href=”https://courts.ky.gov/Expungement/Pages/default.aspx”>expungement certification</a> from the Administrative Office of the Courts.</p><p>Step 2. Complete the AOC legal form Application to Vacate and Expunge Felony Conviction and file the form with the <a href=”https://courts.ky.gov/courts/clerks/Pages/default.aspx”>Office of the Circuit Court Clerk</a> in the county where the conviction occurred.</p><ul><li>Step by step instructions can be found <a href=”https://courts.ky.gov/Expungement/Documents/howto.pdf”>here</a>.</li></ul><p>Step 3. If the prosecutor objects to the expungement within 60 days, the court will schedule a hearing and the circuit court clerk will send notice of the hearing.</p><p>Step 4. If the conviction is vacated and expunged, an order will be sent to the agencies listed on the motion.</p><ul><li>The court and all agencies will expunge their records so that information does not appear on official state-performed background checks.</li></ul>

Can You Seal Your Criminal Record in Kentucky?

If you have been convicted of possession of marijuana, synthetic drugs, or salvia, you may get your record sealed and void the conviction upon satisfactory completion of treatment, probation, or other sentence.[1]

To have your record sealed is a very complicated process that will most likely require the help of an attorney who specializes in expungement records. 

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CANNOT SEAL IF…

<p><strong>Non-drug charges</strong></p><p>If you have a non-Felony D drug charge, you will not be able to get your record sealed.</p>

How to Seal Your Criminal Record in Kentucky

<ol><li>Before you begin this process, we insist that you <a draggable=”false” href=”https://www.felonyrecordhub.com/test/expungement”>take this eligibility test</a> to determine if you’re eligible to seal your record.</li><li>If you are eligible, you should talk to the lawyer that we refer you to so that you get an idea of the price for their services (it’s likely cheaper than you think because expungements are mostly paperwork) and see what other helpful information they can give you.</li><li>If you are <u>not</u> eligible to seal your record based on our test, then you should stop here.</li><li>Because the process is so complicated and time-consuming, with so many exceptions to consider, we highly recommend you seek professional assistance from an attorney.</li></ol>

Can You Apply for a Pardon in Kentucky?

In Kentucky, the Governor can place any conditions, restrictions or limitations on a pardon as he deems just. The Legislature has created a body called the Kentucky Parole Board whose duty is, upon the request of the Governor, to investigate pardon applications and make a recommendation to the Governor.

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CANNOT PARDON IF…

<p><strong>Less than seven years have passed</strong></p><p>At least 7 years must have passed since you completed your sentence before you can apply for a pardon.</p><p><strong>Out-of-State Conviction</strong></p><p>The Governor can only grant you a pardon for a Kentucky state conviction.</p>

How to Apply for a Pardon in Kentucky

<p>The pardon application is rather simple and self-explanatory. It asks for basic information such as your name, address, social security number, date of birth, marital status, information about your children (if any), and employment history, among other things.  There are no fees to apply for a pardon, and all pardon applications must be requested directly from the Governor’s office.</p><p>You can request an application by calling 502-564-2611 or by writing to:<br /> <br /> Commonwealth of Kentucky<br /> Office of the Governor<br /> 700 Capitol Avenue, Suite 100<br /> Frankfurt, KY 40601.</p><ol><li>Before you begin this process, we insist that you <a href=”https://www.felonyrecordhub.com/test/expungement”>take this eligibility test</a> to determine if you’re eligible to request a pardon for your record.  In most cases, if you are eligible for expungement on our test, then you’ll be eligible for a pardon.</li><li>If you are eligible, you should talk to the lawyer that we refer you to so that you get an idea of the price for their services (it’s likely cheaper than you think because requesting a pardon is mostly paperwork) and see what other helpful information they can give you. </li><li>If you are <u>not</u> eligible based on our test, then you should stop here. </li><li>If you are eligible based on our test and want to do this without a lawyer, continue reading.</li><li><a href=”https://static1.squarespace.com/static/53ce893fe4b076d747fd326e/t/53d6bd33e4b03739b8c6c976/1406582067489/KentuckyApp.pdf”>Here</a> is a preview of the pardon application. You need to obtain an official application directly from the Governor’s office; otherwise your application may be rejected or not considered.</li></ol><p><strong>Steps to apply for a pardon in Kentucky</strong></p><p>Step 1. In addition to your basic information, you will also need to provide information about all of your arrests, charges, and convictions, including all misdemeanor and felony cases which you are not seeking a pardon for, except for traffic violations.</p><ul><li>You will need to know things like the name of the offense, the county where you were arrested and charged, the date you were convicted, the name of the prosecutor, the name of the judge, the sentence you received, etc.</li><li>If you do not remember the details or whereabouts of a case, you should contact the Kentucky State Police, Records Section, by calling (502) 227-8713 to obtain a criminal report for yourself. The report should list all arrests, charges, and convictions you have received in Kentucky.</li></ul><p>Step 2. You will need to explain on a separate sheet of paper the “extenuating circumstances” supporting your request for a pardon.</p><ul><li>A pardon is an extraordinary measure. The Governor will only grant you one if you have a very good reason.<ul><li>An example of an extraordinary circumstance may be your inability to pursue a particular job, trade or occupational license because of your conviction, which is preventing you from making an adequate income to support yourself and/or your family.</li><li>Another example of an extraordinary circumstance may be you are facing deportation because of the conviction, and if deported you would be separated from your spouse and children.</li><li>Support your claims with documentary evidence if possible—such as letters of denial from employers/landlords/licensing agencies, immigration documents pertaining to deportation, etc.</li></ul></li></ul><p> </p><ul><li>You should also use this opportunity to explain how you have turned your life around since you were convicted. Explain all the positive things that have occurred in your life, such as educational achievements, new or stable employment, marriage and children, community involvement, charitable donations or services, law-abiding behavior, etc.<ul><li>Again, support your claims with proof, such as copies of your college transcripts, high school diploma or GED, marriage certificate, military certificate, children’s birth certificates, professional licenses, awards and recognitions, etc.</li></ul></li><li>In writing your personal statement, keep in mind that the Governor is not retrying you for the offense. Although you may feel the need to explain the facts of the crime from your perspective, avoid trying to make excessive excuses for your crime and arguing away your guilt. Whatever you feel about the crime, you had already been found guilty.<ul><li>The Governor is probably more interested in seeing your remorse for the crime, and your understanding of its effects on the victim and society, than anything else.</li></ul></li></ul><p>Step 3. You must also submit letters of recommendation along with your application.</p><ul><li>These letters can come from family members, neighbors, past or present employers, co-workers, pastors, church members, elected officials, judges, prosecutors, and others in your community who are familiar with your good character.</li><li>There is no limit on how many letters you can submit. If possible, you should submit letters from those who are not related to you, to avoid the appearance of bias.</li></ul><p>Step 4. Make a copy of everything you send for your records.</p><p>Your entire application, including all supporting letters and documents, must be mailed to the above address.</p>

So, there you have it.  Three separate ways to get rid of your record in Kentucky.  As we’ve said numerous times throughout this page, this is a really complicated process and we highly recommend that you take this eligibility test prior to taking any action to determine if you are eligible for any of these options.

Please note, the information contained here is not legal advice and is strictly informational.  If you have any further questions about the information above, or in general, you need to contact a lawyer directly.

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