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Why getting an expungement in Missouri is a good idea

Although most people in Missouri are aware of the impact a conviction can have on someone, some may not realize that even after a sentence has been served, that conviction stays on a person's criminal record for the rest of their life. This means that the negative stigmas associated with a criminal conviction stay with that person, impacting nearly every aspect of their life along the way.

In July 2012, however, our state signed into law new terms under which a person could request an expungement of their record. As you may know, an expungement is a process by which a person's criminal record can be erased by the courts. This includes, under the new law, an individual's arrest, plea deal, trial and a conviction.

A court-ordered expungement restores a person's legal status to the state it was before he or she faced criminal charges. By wiping the slate clean, a person now has the opportunity to start their life a new, achieving the things they couldn't because of what was on their criminal record.

Along with dissolving the public's negative view of a person, an expungement also does a number of other things such as: reinstating a person's right to carry a firearm, making employment easier to secure and maintain, and giving a person back their ability to vote -- just to name a few.

It's important for our Columbia readers to understand that getting an expungement requires a lot of work and follow through. It also requires legal knowledge that not everyone may have. Because just about everyone wants to get it right the first time, seeking help from a skilled attorney is highly encouraged and could mean the difference between getting an expungements or missing out on a chance to start over again.

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