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CLS Blog: Clean Slate Sealing Process Announced as June 28th Start Approaches


CLS Blog: Clean Slate Sealing Process Announced as June 28th Start Approaches

Clean Slate is a new Pennsylvania law that is the first in the nation to automatically seal certain criminal records via technology. Charges that were dropped or where individuals were found not guilty, as well as summary and minor misdemeanor convictions that are ten years old, may be eligible for auto-sealing. This automated process will begin on June 28, 2019.

According to the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts (AOPC), 30 million cases will be eligible for auto-sealing, which is half of the court’s total database. The courts have a full year – until June 27, 2020 – to finish sealing all of these cases.

That means that each month, about 2.5 million cases will be sealed. Over the summer, non-convictions from the past 10 years will be the first cases sealed. Then summary and misdemeanor convictions that are 10 years old will be sealed. And then AOPC will continue going backwards in time until all eligible cases have been sealed.

CLS believes that in the first month alone, more cases in Pennsylvania will be cleared than the total of all cases that have ever been cleared nationwide.

Once cases are sealed, individual orders will be generated. Individuals or their attorneys can obtain copies of their orders by visiting the county court where the case took place.

Not every case that is eligible to be sealed by automation will be. Some cases are missing vital information in the court database, and some cases still have financials owed. If individuals are still seeing their cases on the public court website after June 27, 2020, they should seek legal help. They may need to take steps to become eligible, such as getting missing grade information inputted into the court’s database, or they may need to file a petition to seal or expunge their record.

CLS has a new “explainer,” telling people in more detail how they can take action in advance of Clean Slate roll-out.

Stay tuned to for updates and much more information.  #CleanSlateCountDown!