People will often ask, “Can you clear my record when this is over?” At first, the question seems simple and lends itself to a simple yes or no answer. Regretfully, as in most areas of the law, the correct answer is IT DEPENDS. Before we talk about clearing your ‘record’, you should know that a DUI arrest creates THREE separate records:
1. An arrest record that is maintained by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
2. Due to the affidavit the officer created when he took your license, you now have a driving record and if quick action is not taken, you will have a permanent record of your license being revoked for an alcohol offense.
3. The most commonly considered record is your court record. A DUI/DWAI conviction cannot be expunged from your record. If your case was dismissed or you received a deferred judgment you MAY be able to have your record sealed. There have been some very conflicting rulings in Colorado recently that put the ability to seal DUI and DWAI related deferred judgments and dismissals into question. Even if you are able to get the dismissal or deferred judgment sealed, this can clear your court record but it may not clear your arrest record. A plea or conviction creates a lifelong non-expungable record.
Your driving record can be cleared only by requesting a hearing within 7 days of your arrest for breath or refusal and within 10 days of the mailing of the order of revocation on a blood test. You must win the hearing—either at the initial administrative hearing or on appeal to one of the following courts: the District Court in the county in which the respondent resides, the Colorado Court of Appeals or by an appeal to the Colorado Supreme Court.
You should know that it is possible to clear your record, but there are many variables that may make it difficult to clear all three records. The facts of each case are different and the results may vary. A competent, qualified DUI attorney who knows the minute details of these issues can guide and help you.