Is your criminal record impacting your life?

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Most people living with a criminal record will be able to explain precisely how the smallest of criminal offences can have a big impact on your life.  All is however not lost.  You can apply to have the offence removed from your record and lead a normal, record free life.

What does Expungement of a criminal record mean?

Expungement is a procedure which results in the lawful clearance and removal of a criminal record from an individual person’s record at the National Criminal Register.

Why would I want my criminal record Expunged?

Potential employers might not necessarily want a person with a criminal record on their premises where such a person might have access to privileged information or expensive equipment. An employer employee relationship is based on trust and having a criminal record might place the employee in a bad light with the employer.

A criminal record might also impact your insurance applications, travel plans and even disqualify you for immigrating.

Who qualifies to have their criminal records expunged?

You will qualify to have your record expunged if 10 years have passed since you were found guilty of the offence and if during this 10 year period you have not been convicted & sentenced for any other offence to a period of imprisonment without the option of a fine.  Your offence must further be listed in Section 271 of the Criminal Procedure Act.

Further circumstances where you would qualify for expungement will include circumstances where your fine did not exceed R20 000,00, if your sentence was postponed or you where cautioned and discharged, imprisonment with the option to pay a fine instead of serving a prison sentence; if imprisonment was wholly suspended and where you were sentenced to correctional supervision.

What other factors will disqualify a person from applying for expungement of a criminal record?

If your offence is based on a sexual transgression against a child or mentally challenged person or your name is included in the National Register for Sex Offenders or the National Child Protection Register, then you will not be able to apply for expungement.  You will however qualify if your name was removed from the National Register for Sex Offenders or the National Child Protection Register.

How long will it take to have my record expunged?

The process of expungement can take between 20 – 28 weeks.

Would you like your record to be expunged?  Contact us on (021) 824 2020 or e-mail your detail to

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)

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