Sealing of Juvenile Court Records
Attorney Michael Rehm - (800) 978-0754
In order to have Juvenile Court records sealed in California, the following rules apply:
- A petition must be filed under Welfare and Institutions Code 781
- Applicant is eligible when one of two events occurs, whichever comes first: 5 years after the termination of juvenile court jurisdiction or when the subject of the records reaches age 18.
- Applicant cannot have been convicted in adult court of a felony or a misdemeanor involving moral turpitude.
- No civil litigation concerning the incident can be pending.
- If the minor was age 14 or older, and convicted of an offense listed under Welfare and Institutions Code Section 707(b), no sealing or destruction is permitted.
- If any offense charged in a juvenile petition is subject to the prohibition on sealing, no charge in the petition can be sealed, as opposed to adult expungements where different charges in a conviction can be dismissed through Penal Code 1203.4
Once sealed “the proceedings…shall be deemed never to have occurred and the person may properly reply accordingly to any inquiry.” W & I 781(a)
- Sex offender registration will be terminated.
- The records of the Department of Justice will be destroyed.
- The defendant is the only person allowed to inspect the records with the following exception:
- And subject to inspection by insurers concerned with certain vehicle code offenses. W & I 781(b)-(c)
Misdemeanor Convictions of Minors in Adult Court:
Although this is a rare situation, when it is applicable Penal Code 1203.45 controls. Relief under this section is available, when relief under Penal Code 1203.4 or 1203.4a would otherwise be applicable.
One major difference between relief under Penal Code 1203.45 and adult expungement, is that under this scenario the records are sealed, including the arrest records and the person may state that they were never arrested either.