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Does a dismissed charge show on my record?

Finding a job, applying for a loan: there are plenty of times when someone might have to run a background check on you. You are not alone in worrying about lost opportunities — that a potential employer might pass you over, that a bank may decide not to invest in you, and so on. Unfortunately, there is no easy answer to the question of whether traces of your dismissed charge might still remain on your record.

Your situation would likely be even more complicated were you arrested for an OUI in Connecticut subsequently had your charge dismissed. While dismissal is not uncommon due to the state’s education and forgiveness programs, and while there are statutes to protect your rights and your reputation in these cases, the fact remains that related items could still appear on a background check in certain situations.

The Connecticut General Statutes contain the sundry rules governing erasure of criminal records in great detail. Distilled, these rules would direct the court and law enforcement officials to remove your records if you were found not guilty or if your case is dismissed. There might be several conditions, depending on your circumstances. Some of the requirements for erasure include:

  • The court dismisses your charge or finds you not guilty unconditionally, i.e. asserts that you are mentally competent.
  • The period of appeals ends, or else prosecutors make an unsuccessful appeal.
  • The court finishes considering other counts in the same indictment and makes them eligible for erasure.

According to the statutes, the erasure of your records would allow you to swear under oath that you were never arrested. However, each case is different, so please do not take this as legal advice. It is meant only as information.

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