Self Help

How to Expunge Your Record

What is expungement?

One of the questions we receive most is what the expungement process involves.  Check out this brief slideshow on What the Petition for Dismissal Does to better understand what this process can accomplish.

Am I eligible?

Another question we get on this subject is whether someone qualifies for this process.  Check out this short slideshow if you are asking Am I Eligible for Expungement?

How do I fill out the forms?

If you decide you want to petition the court for dismissal of an eligible offense, check out this presentation which answers How Do I Fill Out the Forms?

I filled out the forms, now what?

Now that you have filled out your forms, you will need to provide copies to the District Attorney and Probation Department, then file your forms with the court.  Read here if you are asking How do I Serve and File my Paperwork?

Required Forms & Info

The slideshow mentions information you will need and the documents required for the process.  Click here to download the documents – the CR-180, and the CR-181.   The CR-180 is how you request that the court turns your conviction to a dismissal.  The CR-181 is what the court will use when they grant or deny your request.

Here are the Motion Schedules for Criminal Courts in Kern County.  You can use this schedule to help confirm available dates for your hearing, in Bakersfield or any branch location.

Click here to download a Proof of Service. If you serve your documents via email, you will need a Proof of Service – Electronic.  The Proof of Service gets filed with your CR-180 and CR-181 after copies of the CR-180 and CR-181 are served on the District Attorney and Probation Department.

The information you need to fill in your forms is available online.  To access your case information on the Kern County Superior Court website, you can visit this link and look up your case number and information using your name or case number.

I’m confused about the order things happen in the process.  Can I get extra clarification?

We help put on a monthly workshop held via Zoom on this topic.  It is held at 10:30 AM, usually on the first Friday of every month.  CLICK HERE TO REGISTER.

We also have written instructions that will help you with how to pick a hearing date, serve the District Attorney and Probation Department, and file your paperwork.

These instructions are written with the Metropolitan branch of the Superior Court in Bakersfield as its main focus.

Misdemeanor Expungement Instructions may be downloaded here.  Please contact the Law Library if you are having trouble downloading this document.

Felony Expungement Instructions may be downloaded here.

We also have a helpful video below where a volunteer attorney offers commentary on the process.


Seal Arrest and Related Records

If you have already completed the process of expungement, or you have been arrested but your arrest did not result in a conviction, you may also want to petition the court to seal the arrest and related records.

You may download instructions for that process below.

Here are the instructions if you are looking to Seal and Destroy Arrest Record – Misdemeanor

Here are the instructions if you are looking to Seal and Destroy Arrest Record – Felony

You have a choice of forms to use when you petition to have your arrest record sealed.

You may use the Judicial Council Petition and Order, or you may use the Kern County Local Petition and Order.  Feel free to review both sets of documents and decide which works best for you.  You can use the same Proofs of Service linked above in the section on Expungement.  Here is the Kern County District Attorney Service Information – be sure to contact the arresting agency for the arrest/related records you are looking to have sealed to confirm which methods of service they are currently accepting.


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