Process for Expungement

Process for Misdemeanor Expungement

The process of expungement is quite simple with our office. We meet with clients in person or by phone and learn their story, as well as review their cases with them. We are required by statute to order both your official Kentucky Administrative Office of the Court Criminal History and a Kentucky State Police Certificate of Eligibility. The state charges us $40.00 for these documents and has up to 30 days to send us your records. Once the records are sent from the state, we only have 30 days in which to prepare and file the petitions and pay the court fees. During this period, one of our lawyers will review them with you and prepare the appropriate notices, petitions, motions and orders for the courts. Most of our clients do not have to appear in court - our office can take care of everything for you.


If you pled guilty to a misdemeanor, the court charges $100.00 to file for a misdemeanor expungement petition and order. Our fees for services are typically $250.00 for each petition filed, though this fee can vary based on your individual circumstance. For example, if you were charged with a DUI, Reckless Driving, and Speeding 10 years ago on December 31, 2007, we would charge you a retainer of $250.00 to prepare, file and petition the court to expunge your record. You would have to pay an additional $40.00 for us to order your criminal records and certificate of eligibility from the state and you would have to pay a $100.00 expungement filing fee to the courts. The total amount you would have to pay is $390.00 for everything-and we do all the work! In other words, we would charge you a lot less money to erase your record then you paid the lawyer to represent you on the DUI charge initially!

If the charge is for a felony expungement, we must secure a copy of your Kentucky Administrative Office of the Court Criminal History and a Kentucky State Police Certificate of Eligibility. The state charges us $40.00 for these documents and has up to 30 days to send us your records. Once the records are sent from the state, we only have 30 days in which to prepare and file the petitions and pay the court fees. During this period, one of our lawyers will review them with you and prepare the appropriate notices, petitions, motions and orders for the courts. Most of our clients do not have to appear in court - our office can take care of everything for you.

The Circuit Court has up to 120 days to set a hearing date for a felony expungement. The court will notify the Commonwealth Attorney and any victims. That is why it is so important to personalize your petition for expungement with the court. We need to educate the court that not only are you eligible for expungement, but it is the right thing for the court to do!


The court charges $500.00 for filing a felony expungement petition and order. If the court determines you do not qualify, the court will refund ½ of your filing fee. Our fees for a felony expungement typically range from $1,000.00- $1,500.00, though this fee can vary based on your individual circumstance. For example, if you were charged with felony theft, from a department store 10 years ago on December 31, 2007, we would charge you a retainer of $1,000.00 -$1,500.00 to prepare, file and petition the court to expunge your record. The retainer would be based on the type, number, and difficulty of felony expungements you seek to petition to expunge. You would have to pay an additional $40.00 for us to order your criminal records and certificate of eligibility from the state and you would have to pay a $500.00 expungement filing fee to the courts. The total amount you would have to pay is at lease $1,540.00 for everything-and we do all the work! In other words, we would charge you a lot less money to erase your felony record then you paid the lawyer to represent you on the original charge!

Once the expungement order has been signed by the Judge, the order is usually processed quickly. For example in Jefferson County, the clerk’s expungement office receives and processes the order(s) within 72 hours. During that time, the charge is removed from the clerk's records and the Administrative Office of the Courts’ records. Within one week most arresting agencies in Jefferson County and the Metro Department of Corrections will receive and process the expungement of their records and delete the records from their databases. The agencies are supposed to report back to the court within 60 days that the order was processed. The order is sent to the Kentucky State Police for segregation as the custodian of the records in Kentucky. The Kentucky State Police expunges the records from their database and forwards the record of expungement to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The expungement process with the state police and the FBI typically takes at least two additional months to remove from their records.
Under Kentucky law, an expunged record provides you certain protections under KRS 431.078(5):

Upon the entry of an order to expunge the records, and payment to the circuit clerk of one hundred dollars ($100), the proceedings in the case shall be deemed never to have occurred; the court and other agencies shall cause records to be deleted or removed from their computer systems so that the matter shall not appear on official state-performed background checks; the persons and the court may properly reply that no record exists with respect to the persons upon any inquiry in the matter; and the person whose record is expunged shall not have to disclose the fact of the record or any matter relating thereto on an application for employment, credit, or other type of application.

Private vendors purchase state and county records and sell this information as background checks. If a potential employer advises you that they cannot employ you because of your record, please advise them that your records have been expunged and you have a copy of the expungement order. Politely advise them that you were advised by the court and your lawyer that once a case has been expunged it is as if it did not exist and the person who record is expunged shall not have to disclose the fact of the record or any matter related thereto on an application for employment, credit, or other type of application.