Under a bill signed by Gov. Nixon this week, Missourians with a criminal record will have an easier time sealing those records. According to SB 588, a person may petition the court to seal a criminal record after three years if the offense was a misdemeanor or an infraction. For a felony, the person could petition to seal after seven years. Current law requires a person to wait 10 years for a misdemeanor and 20 years for felony. Violent felonies, sex offenses, domestic assaults and other dangerous felonies would not be eligible for expungement under the new bill. The bill also streamlines the expungement process while still allowing law enforcement and prosecutors to have access to the records.
SB 588 passed the General Assembly with large majorities and was billed as “jobs” bill to help reformed offenders find employment. The MCC actively supported the bill that goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2018.