Expunging or Sealing Adult Criminal Records in New Mexico

New Mexico allows adult criminal records to be expunged only in very limited circumstances.

Most of the time, it’s not possible to expunge—that is, erase or seal—an accurate arrest or charge on an New Mexico criminal record, even if you have completed probation. New Mexico allows adult criminal records to be expunged only in the very limited circumstances described below.

Expungement in New Mexico if You Were Not Convicted of a Crime

Misdemeanor arrest records. Your criminal record may be expunged if you were arrested for a misdemeanor or petty misdemeanor offense and no record of disposition can be found. If a record of final disposition exists—including dismissal, a decision not to file charges, or a referral to a preprosecution diversion program—the record is not eligible for expungement. In addition, arrest records for felonies and crimes of “moral turpitude” cannot be expunged. (New Mexico Statutes § 29-3-8.1 (2018).)

Identity theft. If someone else was arrested, charged, or convicted of a crime while using your name or identification, you may petition to have the record expunged. If the court finds that you did not commit the crime with which your name is associated, it will expunge your name and identifying information from the record. (New Mexico Statutes § 31-26-16 (2018).)

Expungement in New Mexico if You Were Convicted of a Crime

With the exception of some DNA records, it is not possible to expunge criminal conviction information in New Mexico. Your DNA records may be purged from the state DNA database if:

  • your conviction was reversed
  • you were not charged with a felony within one year of arrest, or
  • you were charged with a felony but the charges were dropped, dismissed, resolved after completion of a preprosecution diversion program, or you meet certain other requirements.

(New Mexico Statutes § 29-16-10 (2018).)

Getting Legal Help

It is difficult to clean up a criminal record in New Mexico, and the law can change at any time. If you are not sure whether your record qualifies for expungement—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.

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