New York state unfortunately does not have an expungement law for convictions for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In fact, all personal driving histories are permanent records, including seemingly minor moving violations, and plea bargain restrictions apply on all DUI cases. New York uses typical expungement in cases that do not result in an actual conviction, as the original arrest record and investigation reports can be destroyed or sealed from the public view when there is no conviction in the case. However, New York state law does allow convicted drunk drivers to petition the court for relief following the conviction when an experienced and effective criminal defense attorney can craft a case that is acceptable to the court. Applying for Certification for Relief of Disability or Certification for Good Conduct approvals are legal steps that can be taken for those needing to clear their name in some manner. And for those charged who have yet to be convicted, an experienced criminal defense attorney can also potentially plea bargain a DUI charge down to reckless driving when the charge could be borderline or based on questionable evidence.
Certificate for Relief of Disabilities
A Certificate for Relief of Disabilities, legally termed a CRD, is not available to every individual convicted of driving under the influence. The state reserves the right to deny issuance of the certificate even on the basis of safety to society in certain egregious cases. While it is possible to receive certificates even for multiple DUI offenses, there is still no guarantee the court will automatically agree. This is a highly subjective process and our criminal defense attorneys can help establish a sound argument to the court that your punishment for the crime has been met and some form of release is necessary to allow further rehabilitation for employment purposes or public housing allowance in some instances. A criminal record is a very serious issue, especially in states like New York that are very serious about prosecuting DUI and DWAI charges, and many of those convicted will need at least a Relief of Disabilities to acquire future employment, especially in industries such as truck driving. A Certificate for Relief of Disabilities does not restore full constitutional rights, such as the power to hold public office. But, one primary advantage of a CRD is that the certificate can be issued at the time of sentencing when the defendant can prove some level of rehabilitation, which is a condition our legal team will work for diligently in your case presentation.
Certificate of Good Conduct
A Certificate of Good Conduct, or CGC, is a much more comprehensive certification when attempting to legally clear your name, and it actually amounts to a full restoration of all constitutional rights. However, a CGC is not legally accepted as a full pardon. Pardons are separate issues. A successful filing for a Certificate of Good Conduct may require the petitioner to present significant evidence of personal rehabilitation, and our legal team can advise you on what types of evidence can be presented effectively to the court. Your attorney will be invaluable in the application for a CGC because they must effectively argue to the court that you are not a menace to society and have supporting documentation as evidence. It is important to note that a CGC also requires a waiting period after the conviction, but can be approved retroactively for each conviction in multiple offense situations.
The attorney you choose in your process to clear your name after a DUI conviction can be a vital part of the process because the New York court system is serious about potential dangers within the state. Anyone in state of New York who is seeking either a CRD or CGC designation from the state should contact our law firm and let us put our 30 years of legal experience to work for you.