In March of 2019, Utah became the second state in the nation to pass Clean Slate laws. Under Utah Clean Slate laws, individuals with eligible criminal records may qualify to have their record expunged without the formal application and petition processes involving the courts and BCI.
In theory, Utah’s Clean Slate laws provide that government criminal justice agencies are to identify records and process the expungement with no action required by the individual. In reality, government agencies do not always have the staff resources available to process all eligible cases. A person with convictions that qualify for expungement may also initiate the expungement process on their own or with the assistance of an attorney, without waiting for the “automatic” process to happen.
Utah’s Clean Slate laws have their own set of eligibility requirements that are different from traditional expungement eligibility. Eligible cases and records can include records of acquittals (not guilty trial verdicts) and certain other dismissed matters. Some convictions may even be eligible for this “automatic” process – including infractions, class C and class B misdemeanors, and traffic citations.
DUI charges, Class A misdemeanors (not including simple drug possession charges), and felony convictions are not eligible for automatic expungement, but may still qualify for expungement through the traditional court petition process. The traditional application and petition process can also be used to expedite the expungement of cases that qualify for “automatic” expungement but have not yet been expunged.