HOUSTON– Houston area residents with arrests, criminal charges, or convictions are invited to attend a free expunction and non-disclosure clinic. The Expunction and Non- disclosure Clinic is a joint initiative of the Houston Lawyers Association (HLA), the Houston Area Black Law Students Associations (from Thurgood Marshall School of Law, the University of Houston Law Center, and South Texas College of Law Houston), Thurgood Marshall School of Law Civil Rights Law Society, the Earl Carl Institute of the Thurgood Marshall School of Law, and Houston Area American Constitution Society. This free clinic and seminar, open to Houston area residents, will be held on Saturday, January 27, 2018, 9:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at Acres Homes Multi Service Center, located at 6719 W. Montgomery Rd., Houston, TX 77091.
Houston area residents with arrests, criminal charges or convictions on their permanent records suffer a disadvantage when applying for jobs. This is because negative information appears on their permanent records, which is accessible by prospective employers, professional licensing organizations, public benefits, among other things. Texas law allows certain information regarding arrests, charges, and convictions to be removed from individual’s permanent records in certain circumstances through a process called expunction. When an individual qualifies for an expunction of their record, these records are no longer accessible. At the expunction clinic, residents will learn whether the negative information on their records is eligible for expunction by speaking with a volunteer attorney.
It is important to note that not all residents will qualify for an expunction. In that case, our volunteer attorneys will help determine if they qualify for a non-disclosure order. Unlike an expunction, a non-disclosure order only limits the accessibility of the records, which means the information remains on an individual’s permanent record, but only certain entities may have access to review it.
Members of the community should sign up at bit.ly/houstonexpunction and bring their RAP sheet, identification, social security card, and any other court documents to the clinic. Houston area attorneys who would like to participate in the clinic as a volunteer attorney should contact Ms. Abby Kotun at firstname.lastname@example.org.