Michigan Reentry Law Wiki

Cleaning Up Criminal Records: Expungement

From Reentry



You may ask the court to expunge your record if you only have one conviction (felony or misdemeanor). Federal convictions usually cannot be expunged, but they may be able to be pardoned.

Specifically, you may ask the court to expunge your record if:

1. You only have ONE conviction*;
2. Your one conviction is NOT for:
a. An actual or attempted crime punishable by life in prison;
b. Actual or attempted criminal sexual conduct in the second degree (felony);
c. Actual or attempted criminal sexual conduct in the third degree (felony);
d. Actual or attempted assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct (felony); or
e. A traffic offense; and
3. More than 5 years have passed since your sentence was imposed or your prison term was completed, whichever is later.
  • A recent amendment says that you may also have one or two "minor offenses" committed before age 21 on your record and still ask to have the more serious offense expunged. A minor offense is one that carries a maximum jail time of 90 days and/or a fine of less than $1,000.


Michigan expungement statute for adults: MCL 780.621 et. seq.
This section is amended and will be replaced by MCL 780.621.amended on January 14, 2015.

Amended Michigan expungement statute for adults: MCL 780.621.amended et. seq.
This amended will replace the current statute, MCL 780.621, on January 14, 2015. The amended statute provides an immediate avenue to have convictions set aside when they are the direct result of the convicted person being a victim of human trafficking.

Michigan expungement statute for juveniles: MCL 712A.18e

Federal Expungement for drug possession offense for persons under 21: 18 USC 3607

Federal offenses generally cannot be expunged. The only federal offenses which can be expunged are certain drug possession offenses for person under the age of 21.

Court Forms

MC 227: Application to Set Aside (Adult) Conviction

Self-Help: How Can I Make My Michigan Adult Criminal Conviction Nonpublic?

JC66: Application to Set Aside (Juvenile) Adjudication

Self-Help: How Can I Make my Michigan Juvenile Adjudication Nonpublic?

Self-Help Materials

Is Your Criminal Record Holding You Back? Tips on How to Expunge Your Criminal Record(In Pro Per Packet)

Individuals with only one conviction which is at least five years old may be eligible to expunge their criminal record. This packet provides information on eligibility for expungement of Michigan convictions and includes the necessary court forms.

Sample Pleadings

Brief on Standard for Expungements (Jane Doe)

A sample brief in support of a petition for expungement.

Brief in support of expunging a criminal sexual conduct 4 conviction

Sample brief.

Brief on Expungement of Adult Convictions When Client Also Has Juvenile Adjudications (John Doe)

A sample brief for expungement where a client has a single adult conviction and several juvenile adjudications.

Brief in Support of Expungement where Restitution Remains Owing

Prosecutors are likely to oppose and courts are reluctant to grant expungements where significant amounts of restitution are owing. If an applicant cannot pay off the restitution before seeking an expungement, it is recommended that the applicant enter into a payment agreement with the party to whom restitution is owed, and solicit support from that party for an expungement. This brief and attached payment agreement are an example of how that can be done.

Appeal Brief Where Expungement Denied Based on Nature of Conviction

Sets out argument that courts may not deny an expungement solely based on the nature of the underlying offense.

Response for Application for Leave to Appeal Expungement

Response to Prosecutor's request to appeal expungement, where the Court incorrectly granted expungement but Prosecutor failed to timely challenge the initial request for expungement.

Out-of-State Convictions

Expungement and Criminal Records: State Specific Resources

Contains links to expungement and criminal history information for most states.

National Inventory of the Collateral Consequences of Conviction

This is a searchable state-by-state database of collateral consequences of conviction and methods of relief, managed by the American Bar Association. The website also provides a user guide and a bibliography of other resources on collateral consequences.

Procedures for Clearing an Indiana Conviction

It is common for individuals in MI to have convictions from Indiana. This link provides information on expunging Indiana convictions.
Other pages in this section: Obtaining Criminal Records - Correcting Inaccurate Criminal Records - Removing Arrest Information That Did Not Result in Conviction - Deferrals and Dismissals for Specified Offenses - Pardons - Getting Damages for Inaccurate Records- Juvenile Records

Return to section overview: Cleaning Up Criminal Records

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