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Expunction & Non-disclosure of Criminal Records

District courts (and in some instances other courts) have jurisdiction for expunction and non-disclosure of criminal records.  This section deals with the policies and procedures to be used in the 506th Judicial District Court in both Grimes County and Waller County for obtaining orders for expunction or nondisclosure of criminal records. Expunction due to acquittal after trial is not included in this procedure.  In the event of any conflict between these instructions and the requirements of law, the requirements of law shall govern.

Chapter 55 of the Code of Criminal Procedure governs expungement.  Provisions for nondisclosure is covered under Texas Government Code Section 411.081, as well as Chapter 55 of the T.C.C.P.

An expunction or non-disclosure order may be obtained by filing a petition alleging the necessary elements and presenting proof of those elements at the time of the Court's consideration of the petition.  The petition should be filed as required by statute, which includes in the court where the case was tried if it was a district court, or in any district court in the same county of the trial court if the trial court was a lower court.

After the petition is filed, the court shall hear the matter no sooner than 30 days from the date of filing of the petition. In preparing the petition, go to the calendar on this website for a proposed hearing date. The hearing date will be the bench trial date soonest after 30-days from the date of filing of the petition. Before filing the petition, contact the Court Coordinator for confirmation of the hearing date for inclusion in the petition. 

For adequate notice, the preferred and most efficient procedure is to have the District Clerk provide the statutory notices. However, the party may provide notice to each of the entities listed in the petition by either certified mail-RRR, secure electronic mail, or fax transmission. If the party provides the notice, it is up to the party to file all the appropriate delivery receipts in order to substantiate the required notice. Alternatively, and as stated above, the party may request the Clerk to provide the notice, and pay the appropriate fee for such notice. If that is done, the Clerk will provide the statutory notice, and file the proof of notice.

As required by statute, whether notice is given by the party or through the District Clerk, reasonable notice of the hearing date must be given to each official, agency, or other entity named in the petition. The petitioner is responsible for identifying each such entity.  

After all notices have been given and all time has passed, AND if no objections have been filed by any agency, one of three procedures may be used for obtaining the Court's consideration of the Petition: 

1) Petitioner may obtain the signed approval of the Assistant District Attorney handling the case and present the approved, signed Order to the Court under an immediate submission; or

2) After all required time has passed and there is no objection, and without approval by the Assistant District Attorney, Petitioner may use a 5-day Notice of Submission in order to have the Order approved; or, 
3) Petitioner may appear at the hearing date set forth in the petition.
In any event, it is the Petitioner's responsibility to provide a properly completed and formatted Order. 
After all required notices have been sent and the required return date has been met, consideration of the matter by the Court will be given, as set out by statute and above. In the event any entity receiving notice of the petition files an objection, the matter shall be set for hearing in the same manner as all other contested hearings in the 506th Judicial District Court.  See Setting Requests here.

Click here to download Notice of Submission form