Site Tools

Current Size: 100%

Clean Slate: Changing Lives by Sealing Criminal Records


Clean Slate: Changing Lives by Sealing Criminal Records

Date Posted: 

Update: 6/26/2018: Clean Slate passed in Pennsylvania on June 22, 2018!

Having even a minor criminal record can serve as a barrier to nearly all basic necessities including employment and housing. Records can also stop people from furthering their education and advancing in their careers. Clean Slate will prevent minor criminal records from trapping people in poverty for life. 

Clean Slate will:

  • Automatically seal arrests where the person was not convicted, summary offenses, and many non-violent misdemeanors;
  • Expand the list of misdemeanors that can be sealed.

Pennsylvania’s Clean Slate legislation is the first of its kind in the nation and enjoys support from both Republicans and Democrats. The Clean Slate bill, HB1419, recently passed through both chambers of Pennsylvania's General Assembly, and was signed by Governor Wolf.

Here's what you need to know about Clean Slate:

Clean Slate Summary

Learn what types of records qualify for Clean Slate sealing.

Flow Chart: Do You Qualify for Sealing?

Find out if you qualify to have your criminal record sealed.

Frequently Asked Questions About Clean Slate

What is Clean Slate? What is "sealing?" When does Clean Slate take effect?

“Clean Slate” Bill Approved by Pennsylvania General Assembly

Groundbreaking Automated Record Sealing with Broad Support Will Help Pennsylvanians Get a Second Chance

CLS Blog: Clean Slate Takes a Step Forward

On Wednesday, April 11th, Clean Slate moved a step closer to becoming law, when PA House Bill 1419 was passed by the House by a 188-2 vote. The Senate unanimously passed a similar Clean Slate bill, on June 28, 2017. Read more.

We All Benefit from a Clean Slate for Minor Criminal Records

Over the past two decades, even the most minor criminal convictions have become lifetime barriers to the necessities of life – jobs, housing, education, and much more. The most effective public policy strategy to address these many barriers is to eliminate the record. A new proposal known as “Clean Slate” (SB 529/HB 1419) is a powerful anti-recidivism tool that will allow Pennsylvanians with minor criminal records to get past these barriers, to the benefit of the broader community. Read more.


Clean Slate Will Help Prevent Homelessness in Pennsylvania

On any given day, 15,000 Pennsylvanians experience homelessness. Rates of homelessness in Pennsylvania have increased, especially among veterans, families, and young people. The number of young Pennsylvanians who do not have shelter has increased by a third. Clean Slate can prevent homelessness. Read more.


Clean Slate is a Game-Changer for Pennsylvania Families

People with old and minor criminal records are no more likely to commit future crimes than people without records. We all make mistakes, but only some are punished forever because of them. Clean Slate would change that. Read more.