Being the parent of a child who has been charged with a juvenile crime can be an overwhelming and frightening experience. Apart from penalties that may include court ordered community service or counseling, time in a juvenile detention facility, or time in an adult jail or prison, parents often fear for the long-term consequences that a criminal record can impose on their child. This is especially true for children who may be beginning their education, search for employment, and their new lives as adults and contributing members of our society.
At Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A., our Minneapolis criminal defense attorneys provide the experienced representation and support youth and their parents need when juvenile charges have been filed. In addition to defending against allegations and protecting the rights of youth charged with crimes, our team can also provide assistance in matters involving the criminal record of a juvenile who has already been convicted or has had their case adjudicated in a Minnesota juvenile court.
How a juvenile crime will be treated on a person’s record will depend on the nature of their case. To help you better understand some of the common scenarios in these matters, we’ve provided some information below:
- Juvenile records – In most juvenile crime cases handled by a juvenile court in the state of Minnesota, cases are sealed from public view. There are some exceptions, including when an offense would be considered a felony if child was at least 16 years of age. Most of these juvenile offenders will be able to petition for an expungement, or sealing, of a criminal record when they become adults. In cases where no charges were filed and only an arrest appears on record, juveniles who remain out of trouble for 10 years will have the arrest expunged from their record without having to file a petition.
- Juveniles tried as adults / charged with felonies – In cases where juveniles were charged as adults or where the offense would have been considered a felony had the child been at least 16 years old, a petition for expungement must be completed. Juveniles may qualify for an expungement if charges were dismissed, juveniles were not found guilty, or a guilty plea was not entered. Even in cases where a juvenile was found guilty, you can still file a petition and request the court to consider an expungement of arrest, court, or conviction records.
Expunging a criminal record can be a complicated process, and it is one that varies from case to case depending on the age of an individual and the unique set of facts involved. As such, our legal team makes it a point to personally evaluate cases in order to help parents and their children understand their legal rights, the process of sealing a record, and how we may be able to help pursue an expungement.
It is important to note that Minnesota has reformed its expungement process to allow for more discretion and leeway. This means that if a juvenile has an arrest, court, or conviction record, they may still have the opportunity to petition the court for an expungement, especially if a child has remained out of trouble or when the collateral consequences of a record can hurt them more than was intended to do so.
Our defense lawyers at Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A. have extensive experience handling juvenile crime and expungement matters, and are prepared to help you better understand if your child may be eligible for expungement. To discuss your case with an attorney from our firm during a free consultation, contact us today.