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Having adult court records sealed in Washington

On Behalf of | May 28, 2021 | Conviction Vacation

If you have a vacated conviction or your case carries safety or privacy issues, Washington state may seal or redact your criminal record. After the state court seals a record, employers and others cannot access this information in a public record search.

Learn more about vacated convictions and other requirements for record sealing in Washington.

Misdemeanor convictions

To qualify for the vacation of a Washington misdemeanor conviction, you must complete your sentence and pay all associated fees and expenses. The offense must have occurred at least three years ago and you cannot have any new pending criminal charges or convictions, civil restraining orders, no-contact orders, or domestic violence protection orders.

The court will not seal misdemeanor convictions for violent offenses, attempts to commit violent offenses or driving under the influence.

Felony convictions

You can request that the court vacate a felony conviction as long as your criminal history does not involve:

  • A new conviction in the past five years for the vacation of a Class C felony
  • A new conviction in the past 10 years for the vacation of a Class B felony
  • A violent offense

You must wait at least 10 years after sentencing or custody release to have your record sealed for a Class B felony and at least five years for a Class C felony.

After the Washington court agrees to vacate a misdemeanor or felony conviction, you may legally state that you have never received a conviction for the crime in question. However, until you go through the sealing process successfully, the record will remain publicly available.