If you have a criminal record, it can be difficult to live a normal lifestyle. Applying for jobs and completing background checks are troublesome and can hinder you from doing what you want. Fortunately, South Carolina courts may be able to offer some relief.

Depending on your crime and your history, you may be able to have your record expunged. Expungement occurs when a court order removes an arrest or offense from your criminal record, which means that future employers or individuals who run background checks will not be able to see the offense that you had expunged.

You may be eligible for expungement if…

The South Carolina courts lay out a detailed explanation of eligibility here, as there are fairly specific regulations. However, the following list gives a good overview about which crimes and offenses you can have expunged.

  • A judge never found you guilty
  • You completed an alcohol or traffic education program
  • First offense of simple drug possession
  • First offense misdemeanor for fraudulent checks
  • First offense for failure to stop for law enforcement
  • First offense conviction of a crime with a penalty of no more than 30 days prison time or a fine of $500
  • First offense when you were between 17 and 24 years old
  • Juvenile offense

You are not eligible for expungement if…

  • A judge convicted you of a felony
  • A judge convicted you for a DUI
  • You have had your record expunged in the past
  • You did not complete alcohol or traffic education program

Getting your record expunged can be life-changing, which is why it is beneficial to know if you are eligible to apply or not.