Criminal Record Rehabilitation

Criminal Record Rehabilitation

Nebraskans with criminal records may face obstacles when looking for a job or a place to live.

 

There are several ways you might be able to repair your criminal record.

 

These methods could improve your criminal record in the eyes of future employers and landlords, restore certain civil rights, and even remove the record from what the public can see.

 

 In Nebraska, the clean slate processes available are:

  • Adult record sealing,

  • Juvenile record sealing,

  • Criminal conviction set-asides, and

  • Pardons. 

To see if your criminal record may be eligible for clean slate relief, complete the following questionnaire.   

 

Continue reading for a brief explanation of each of the ways to apply to get a “clean slate” in Nebraska:  

 

Adult Record Sealing

The adult record sealing option is dependent on certain characteristics of the record.

You may be eligible to have your record sealed:

  • for charges that were either dismissed or resulted in acquittal.

  • If you have received a pardon; or

  • If you have been a victim of human trafficking.

When a criminal record is sealed, it removes information about the arrest and conviction from the public record. 

 

For additional information on adult record sealing, including eligibility and the court process, click here.  

 

Juvenile Record Sealing

A record is a “juvenile record” if you were under the age of 18 when the offense took place. 

  • Juvenile records are normally sealed automatically when the case is closed. 

  • If the record is not sealed automatically, additional steps are required to ask the court to have those records sealed. 

When a juvenile record is sealed, it removes information about the arrest and conviction from the public record. 

 

For additional information on juvenile record sealing, including eligibility and the court process, click here

 

Set-Aside

A set-aside is an order by the sentencing court that acts to void the conviction.  

  • A set-aside does not erase your conviction. Instead, a set-aside nullifies the prior conviction and restores certain civil rights.

  • A person with a conviction that has been set-aside must still report that conviction to employers or landlords when asked but can explain that the conviction was subsequently nullified by the sentencing court.   

For additional information on set-asides, including eligibility and the court process, click here

 

Pardons

Board of Pardons

A pardon offers some of the same benefits as a set-aside, as it acts to nullify the conviction. 

  • A pardon from the Board of Pardons also allows for the return of certain rights that a set-side does not, including the return of gun rights and other rights that were taken away when you were convicted of a felony.

  • A pardon does not mean that you were innocent, but it says that the Board has considered your conduct since sentencing and has determined that the applicant deserves to have their rights restored. 

  • For convictions that resulted in imprisonment of more than one year, a pardon from the Board of Pardons is the only clean slate method available. 

  • Once a record has been pardoned, it is eligible to be sealed. 

For additional information about obtaining a pardon from the Board of Pardons, click here

 

Mayoral Pardons

Mayoral pardons are only available to those convicted for violations of either Omaha or Lincoln municipal code.  

  • Convictions of state offenses must be pardoned by the Board of Pardons. 

  • Mayoral pardons have similar benefits to a set-aside in that certain civil liabilities will be restored and there will be an overall improvement in the criminal record.  

  • Once a record has been pardoned, it is eligible to be sealed.  

For additional information about obtaining a mayoral pardon, click one of the following links:

Omaha Mayoral Pardon   

Lincoln Mayoral Pardon

 

EXPUNGEMENT - (No Informational Page)

An expungement of your criminal record removes the arrest from your record entirely, as if it did not happen.

An expungement is rare and is only available when you have clear and convincing evidence your arrest was due to law enforcement error.

A petition must be filed in the district court where you were arrested.

The petition should name the county attorney as the respondent and must be served on the county attorney.