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Thankfully, those people in Missouri who made a simple mistake and received a DWI can look forward to the day when that charge is removed from their record forever. Once a person has paid their debt to society it is nice to know that they can eventually ask to have their slate wiped clean, not fearing that their mistake will haunt them for the rest of their lives.

Missouri DWI expungement

Missouri differs from most states in that it has a specific statute addressing DWI expungement. This is because for a long time the only incidents a person could have expunged from his or her record were DWIs. Recently the state legislature passed a new law that allowed for other categories of offenses to be expunged, meaning that those with some nonviolent felonies and misdemeanors could hope to have their records wiped clean as well.

Requirements for DWI expungement

If someone wants to have a DWI charge expunged from their record they must meet certain criteria laid out in Missouri Revised Statutes Section 577.054. First, the DWI charge must have been the driver’s first alcohol-related driving offense. Second, the DWI must be a misdemeanor charge rather than a more serious felony offense. Third, the DWI charge must be at least 10 years old. Fourth, the person requesting the expungement must not have faced any subsequent alcohol related driving charges. Finally, the person requesting the expungement must not have any other alcohol-related enforcement contacts or charges pending at the time of the expungement proceedings.

What happens once a DWI is expunged?

Missouri law says that the effect of an expungement order is to restore a person to the status that he or she occupied prior to the DWI arrest. This means that an expungement eliminates all record of the DWI offense, wiping the slate clean as if it had never taken place. The law even makes clear that once an expungement has taken place a driver can truthfully answer “No” when asked whether he or she has ever been arrested for a DWI. This can help immensely when a person is applying for work or to school and removes a very embarrassing moment from your Missouri record.
If you have had a run in with the law and find yourself in need of a Missouri DWI defense lawyer capable of aggressively protecting your interests, contact our St. Louis DWI law firm today at (314) 863-0500.

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