Mississippi Expungement Law


Expungement of Criminal Records – General – Mississippi

1.  What is an expungement?

The process of legally destroying, obliterating or striking out records or information in files, computers and other depositories relating to criminal charges.

2.  Do the records just “disappear”?

No. A youth court may order destruction of juvenile records. M.C. § 43-21-265. In the case of misdemeanor first conviction records and records of drug offenders dismissed after probation, records are retained for purposes of determining if a first offender in subsequent proceedings. M.C. § 99-19-71 and § 41-29-150.

3.  What records may be expunged?

All official public records all records relating to arrest, indictment, trial, sentence, and disposition of case. Certain juvenile medical or mental health examinations records may not be expunged. § M.C. 43-21-265. No expunction of any implied consent violation is allowed. M.C. § 9-23-23. Records of sex offenses required to be disseminated may not be expunged. M.C. § 45-33-55.

4.  Who is eligible for an order of expungement?

1) A juvenile arrested and released and whose case was dismissed or the charges were dropped or there was no disposition of such case. No pending charges must exist. M.C. § 43-21-159.
2) A person convicted of a misdemeanor, excluding a conviction for a traffic violation and who is a first offender. M.C. § 99-19-71.
3) A person arrested and released and the case was dismissed or the charges were dropped or there was no disposition of the case, unless such person has been charged (a) with an offense pertaining to the sale, barter, transfer, manufacture, distribution or dispensing of a controlled substance, or the possession with intent to sell, barter, transfer, manufacture, distribute or dispense a controlled substance, as provided in Section 41-29-139(a)(1), except for a charge under said provision when the controlled
substance involved is one (1) ounce or less of marijuana; (b) with an offense pertaining to the possession of one (1) kilogram or more of marijuana as provided in Section 41-29-139(c)(2)(F) and (G); or (c) with an offense under the Mississippi Implied Consent Law. M.C. § 99-19-71 and M.C. § 99-15-26.
4)  A person who served a sentence or period of probation and parole, pled guilty within six (6) months prior to the effective date of March 31, 1983, of M.C. § 99-15-26 and would have otherwise been eligible for the relief allowed in such section. M.C. § 99-15-57.
5) A person who is arrested, issued a citation, or held for any misdemeanor and not formally charged or prosecuted with an offense within twelve months of arrest, or receives a dismissal of the charge. M.C. § 99-15-59.
6) A person who was dismissed and the proceedings against them discharged or convicted for certain drug offenses under (c) or (d) of M.C. § 41-29-139 and had not reached their twenty-sixth birthday at the time of the offense, or a person who had satisfactorily served his sentence or period of probation and parole, had not turned 26 at the time of the offense. M.C. § 41-29-150.
7) A person convicted of a misdemeanor drug offense of marijuana possession which is a 1st or 2nd conviction will have records of conviction expunged after two years. M.C. § 41-29-139.
8)  A defendant or participant who was sentenced at the time of entry of plea of guilty, and successfully completed the drug court order and other requirements of probation or suspension of sentence. M.C. § 9-23-23.

5.  How do I get records expunged?

1) Juveniles may petition the court having jurisdiction over their case for an order of expungement. If found eligible under the conditions of (1) above, the order must be granted. M.C. § 43-21-159.
2) A person arrested and released and the case was dismissed or the charges were dropped or there was no disposition of the case is entitled to an order of expungement upon petition to the court with jurisdiction over their case. M.C. § 99-19-71 and M.C. § 99-15-26.
3) A person who is arrested, issued a citation, or held for any misdemeanor and not formally charged or prosecuted with an offense within twelve months of arrest, or receives a dismissal of the charge must petition the court for an expungement order. Granting of the order is discretionary. M.C. § 99-15-59.
4) A person who was dismissed and the proceedings against them discharged or convicted for certain drug offenses under (c) or (d) of M.C. § 41-29-139 and had not reached their twenty-sixth birthday at the time of the offense may petition the court for an order of expungement, which must be granted. A person who had satisfactorily served his sentence or period of probation and parole, had not turned 26 at the time of the offense may petition the court for an order of expungement but it is discretionary for the court to grant the order. M.C. § 41-29-150.
5) A person convicted of a misdemeanor drug offense of marijuana possession which is a 1st or 2nd conviction will have records of conviction expunged as a matter of law without petition to the court after two years. M.C. § 41-29-139.
6) Persons successfully completing drug court and other sentencing requirements are entitled to have records exspunged a matter of law without petition to the court. M.C. § 9-23-23.