When does a criminal arrest go off my record?

When does a criminal arrest go off my record?

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I am currently an upcoming senior in college. When i was 16 years old i was arrested and convicted for being in a fight, it was self defense on my part however both parties of the alleged incident were convicted and we served 10 days community service.

I am very concerned about getting a job after graduation and if this will affect my marketability to a company. Most companies do not hire anyone with a criminal record at all.

Will this ever go off my record? It’s been about 6 years i am in NY state? Is there any way to request this off my record? will it ever go off? I have not been in trouble since.
I was charged as an adult, not a juvenile.


  1. criminal arrests never go away. There will always be a record of it with law enforcement. On most job applications they ask for arrests within a certain number of years prior.

    If you were convicted, and there has been no further illegal activity (charges and convictions) you could apply for expungment of the conviction. Laws vary from state to state on how to do this. But the record of it will always be there.
    If someone wanted to find it, they could go to the clerk of the court and do a records search and probably find it.

  2. Depending on seriousness of crime, what the court disposition was, and your age when it happened, this could probably be on your record for life.

    Any time you apply for a job, if they ask, you have to tell the truth about this.

    Now you say it was self defense on your part, but since you were given 10 days community service, it does not sound like the court agreed, so the truth is not your defense, it is what the court decided is the truth.

  3. Generally, if you have a conviction it never goes away. There are some special rules for offenses as a juvenile. Check the below site for additional information.

  4. Since you were 16 at the time of the fight and your detention, you probably do not have a "criminal" arrest on your record. Offenses committed by juveniles usually are treated as delinquent acts, not criminal offenses. If so, your juvenile record was sealed when you became an adult. Prospective employers, for example, no longer have access to that information.

    If you only got 10 days community service, it is likely you were treated as a juvenile, not as an adult. You can check with your local juvenile probation office/court to determine if that is the case.

  5. It is a misdemeanor and will come off of your record in 10 years. YES some convictions DO come off your record, IN SOME STATES. If you were convicted as a juvenile, your record is sealed anyway.

  6. Those who say an adult charge (even though you were a juvenile at the time of the charge) never goes off your record are correct.

    Two additional thoughts, however. First, since you were a juvenile, you can apply to have the conviction expunged (erased) from your record. This will require you to hire an attorney. The judge will have discretion to expunge it or not.

    Second, employers (except for the government and those hiring for jobs requiring a security clearance) can only ask if you have ever been convicted of a felony. From your description, there is a good chance you were convicted of a misdemeanor instead of a felony. That means you can honestly answer "no" to the felony question.

    Good luck to you.

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