If you follow The Kronzek Firm’s blog (which you should do!) then you know we talk about the issue of expungements on a relatively regular basis. This is partly because we are in favor of people getting a second chance at a future, and we don’t like to see anyone held back from their best life by a mistake from long ago. But it’s also because we firmly believe that while it’s great to have a criminal record expunged, it’s even better to not get a criminal record in the first place (making expungement of prior convictions something of a moot point if you get a great criminal defense lawyer right from the start!).
The issue of expungement and marijuana seem to go hand-in-hand lately
One of the questions we’ve had a number of people ask us recently has to do with the issue of expungement and marijuana convictions. In the wake of Michigan’s statewide legalization of recreational marijuana, there has been growing discontent about the number of people sitting behind bars for weed-related crimes that aren’t crimes anymore. And then there’s the rising movement towards forgiveness when it comes to certain criminal backgrounds. So with that in mind, what is Michigan doing about expunging marijuana-related convictions?
Answer: they’re doing something, but it may not be what you’d hoped for!
A number of other states that have passed expungement laws recently have made it automatic to have a great many types of criminal histories automatically sealed, including weed-related crimes. But that’s not the case for Michigan. Senate Bill 416, introduced earlier this year by Senator Jeff Irwin, proposed that a Michigan resident could have up to one marijuana-related felony and two misdemeanors cleared from their record. But you would still have to file paperwork with the court to get that clearance.
It wasn’t quite what the lawmakers hoped for when they crafted the bill
“People who have committed very petty crimes should be able to get rid of those without having to jump through additional hoops, including having to file hundreds of thousands of unnecessary applications with the courts,” Irwin said at a recent press conference. State Representative David LaGrand says he supports Irwin’s efforts and will be fighting for automatic expungement as well, because as he terms it, “it’s cray-cray to make 235,000 people go to court to get their records cleared.”
So if you’ve got weed convictions, expect some paperwork in your future…
The skilled and experienced legal defense team at The Kronzek Firm can help with an expungement request if you have a criminal record (even one that’s not related to marijuana). If you have a past indiscretion on your record that’s keeping you from the home, school, or job of your dreams, please download our expungement information form and fill it out. After you’ve submitted it, we’ll assess your options and be able to determine whether or not you’re eligible to petition for an expungement in Michigan. Don’t wait – your future is on the line! Call 866 766 5245 (866 7NoJail) right now and get the help you need to pursue the future you deserve.