Federal Felonies Are a Very Big Deal
Video Transcribed: Can you get a federal expungement? My name’s Ted Hasse. I’m a Federal Criminal Defense Attorney in Oklahoma at Wirth Law Office. I handle our federal criminal matters. In short, the answer to federal expungements is generally no. There’s no process for federal expungements. A lot of people are surprised when they call us to find that out.
Most states have a way to get expunged from your record some offense that happened some years ago. There is a process. There is a way to get that off your record and to move forward. Unfortunately, in the federal system, it’s very different. And the general answer, although there’s some complexity around this, the general answer is that you need a presidential pardon in order to get something completely wiped free of your records.
So, federal felonies are a very big deal for that reason. What it can mean is, essentially, for the rest of your life, unless you are one of the handfuls of people who end up with a federal pardon each year, and there are thousands of applications every year for presidential pardons, you’re essentially never allowed to legally own a gun, except for certain categories of antique firearms, that sort of thing. But you can’t have that, that same, for example, gun right that everybody else has.
There are a handful of very special circumstances cases where somebody has been exonerated and there’s proof of, not just innocence, but really a case of improper prosecution, where there was no conviction. There can sometimes be sealing of federal records, but the bar is very high and it’s very unusual.
The general answer is, certainly, if you’ve ever been convicted of a federal crime, a federal felony, certainly, there is really no process. Now, there are a handful of circumstances that I believe, federal misdemeanor possession, there may be a process.
But generally speaking, if you’re in a situation where you had had a federal felony, you were convicted, there’s not an expungement process like you see at the state level. And really, what you have to swing for is some sort of, not some sort of, specifically, a presidential pardon.
Now, there are other circumstances for post-conviction relief at the federal level that are helpful to people that are still being incarcerated. Please feel free to give us a call if you need a Federal Criminal Defense Attorney, or If you any have questions, call (918) 932-2800.