In Montana, your criminal record may be expunged under the limited circumstances described below. Depending on the type of record, expunged information may be erased, sealed, or returned to you.
If You Were Not Convicted of a Crime
If you were arrested but not charged with or convicted of a crime -- or if your conviction is later invalidated -- you may request that any photographs or fingerprints taken as evidence be returned to you. (Montana Code Ann. § 44-5-202.)
If You Were Convicted of a Crime
Your sentence was deferred and your case was dismissed. If you were convicted of a crime, but the court deferred the imposition of your sentence and the charges against you were eventually dismissed, your criminal record may be eligible for sealing. (Montana Code Ann. § 46-18-204.)
Your conviction was reversed. If you were convicted of a sexual or violent offense and your conviction was later reversed, your criminal record, including DNA evidence, may qualify for expungement. (Montana Code Ann. §§ 46-23-510, 44-6-107.)
If your criminal record is sealed or expunged you will not, in most cases, have to disclose that you were convicted of a crime.
Getting Legal Help
Cleaning up a criminal record can be complicated. If you are not sure whether your record qualifies for expungement in Montana -- or for advice about your personal situation -- you should contact a qualified criminal law attorney. A good lawyer can guide you each step of the way.