Record Clearance

Record Clearance

Expungement/Record Clearance

A Record Clearance or Expungement of your conviction does help with employment, housing, student aid and other opportunities, however it does not completely erase the conviction. Information relating to your record may be made available to public employers or others, where the release is authorized by law. You may still be required to disclose the conviction in response to certain direct questions. You may be prohibited from owning a firearm because of the conviction. In addition, record clearance will not keep the charge from being alleged against you as a prior conviction in any future criminal proceedings.

Early Termination of Probation

If your performance on probation (Formal or Court/Summary) has been good and you have successfully completed at least half your period of probation, the court may consider releasing you from probation early. The court will consider the victim's welfare and your prior offenses. If you are on Formal Probation, you may consult with your assigned Probation Officer. If you are on Summary/Court Probation, you may file a motion requesting an Early Termination with the Court.

Felony Reduction

Many offenses can be charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor. A felony is more serious than a misdemeanor. If you were convicted of the felony version of an offense, you may petition the court to reduce the severity of the offense to a misdemeanor. Generally, the court wants to see that you have paid restitution and a significant period has elapsed since the conviction. Some offenses, especially certain sex and drug offenses, exist only as felonies and cannot be reduced.  Additionally, if you were sentenced to state prison, you are not eligible to have your felony reduced to a misdemeanor.

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Key Considerations

  • Victim restitution is paid in full.

  • Fines and fees are paid in full.
  • Classes are completed.
  • Jail sentence for that conviction is completed.
  • Community service work is done.
  • Include proof of all the above to the best of your ability.
  • You are not on probation, parole, or diversion for any conviction.
  • You have no pending charges against you in any jurisdiction.
  • There are no Warrants for your arrest.
  • No convictions for:  Sections 2800, 2801, or 2803 of the Vehicle Code, or for Sections 286 (c), 288, 287(c), 288a, 288.5, 289 (j), 311.1, 311.2, 311.3, 311.11 or 261.5(d) (Felony) of the California Penal Code.

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How Do I Get an Expungement/Record Clearance, Early Termination, or Felony Reduction?

In Santa Clara County you have several options:

  1. You may contact a Private Attorney and they may file a Motion on your behalf.

  2. You may contact local community resources:

    County of Santa Clara Public Defender
    Office of the Public Defender
    Reentry Expungement Program
    Location:  Re-entry Resource Center
    151 W. Mission Street
    San Jose, CA 95110
    (408) 535-4290

    San Jose State Record Clearance Project
    Email:  [email protected]
    Phone: (408) 924-2758 message line
    Website:  Record Clearance Project (

    Elevate Community Center
    Email: [email protected]
    Phone: (408) 357-9538
    Website:  Elevate Community Center (

  3. You may file your own Motion with the Court to obtain a Record Clearance Court hearing date.  Below is a step-by-step video on how to fill out forms along with the links for the forms.

    Record Clearance motion CR180, CR181, MC031.pdf

    Complete CR-180, CR-181, and MC-031 forms.

    Attach all supporting documents.

    Make five copies of all forms. File all six packets (original and five copies) at the Clerk’s office to receive a court date.  (See resources for appropriate courthouse).

    Serve the County of Santa Clara District Attorney’s Office with a file stamped copy of your motion at:

         70 West Hedding Street, West Wing
         San Jose, CA 95110
         Phone (408) 299-7400

    Serve the County of Santa Clara Probation Department with a file stamped copy of your motion via in person, US Mail, Fax, or Email.

         Adult Services Division - Main Office
         Attn: Record Clearance
         2314 North 1st Street San Jose, CA 95131
         Phone: (408) 435-2061
         Fax: (408) 955-0466
         Email: [email protected]

  4. You may submit a Record Clearance Application directly to the Probation Department via in person, U.S. Mail, or Fax: (408) 955-0466.


    Once the application is submitted, Probation will review the application and determine whether the matter can be handled by the Court via ex-parte review (no Court hearing) or placed on the Court’s calendar for a Record Clearance hearing. 

    Probation will correspond with the applicant via U.S. Mail; please ensure all contact information is legible.

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Additional Information

The information below will help you identify the Courthouses where criminal cases are filed in Santa Clara County:

  1. Hall of Justice (handles all felonies and misdemeanor criminal matters for San Jose, Milpitas, Los Gatos, Saratoga, Monte Sereno, and Santa Clara)

    190 West Hedding Street
    San Jose, CA 95110
  2. South County Courthouse (handles misdemeanor criminal matters for San Martin, Morgan Hill, and Gilroy)

    301 Diana Avenue
    Morgan Hill, CA 95037
  3. Palo Alto Courthouse (handles misdemeanor criminal matters for Cupertino, Mountain View, Palo Alto, and Sunnyvale)

    270 Grant Avenue
    Palo Alto, CA 94306
  4. Department of Tax and Collections (DTAC) (Restitution, fines. and fees)

    852 North First St
    San Jose, CA 95112
    Phone: (408) 326-1000

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Frequently Asked Questions FAQ’s

    Yes, but you will have to file a petition for early termination of probation at the same time.  If you are on Formal Probation consider the above listed key considerations and consult with your assigned Probation Officer.  If you are on Court/Summary Probation consider the key considerations before filing a motion to termination Probation early.

    You can file them all at the same time.

    Each docket/case number will need its own petition which may contain several convictions based on your case history.

    NO.  The initial conviction is still in the Court file, and on file with the Department of Justice, however if the Court grants a Record Clearance your records will reflect that the conviction has been set aside and dismissed per 1203.4 PC.

    Information relating to your case may be made available where release is authorized by local, state or federal law.

    In response to direct questions contained in any questionnaire or application for public office or for licensure by any state or local agency, or for contracting with the California State Lottery Commission.


    You will need to contact the jurisdiction where you were convicted unless your case was transferred to Santa Clara County by the court.

    Yes. Santa Clara County does not charge a filing fee, nor does the Probation Department charge an application fee.  If you retain a private attorney, they may charge you.

    Try to get a copy of your records and provide copies with your motion or application.

    You can contact the Santa Clara County Hall of Justice use this link on how to obtain a copy.

    The Probation Department does not retain Record Clearance records.

    Go to the County of Santa Clara Sheriff’s Office 55 W. Younger San Jose, CA or to make an appointment, call (408) 808-4705.

    Sheriff's Office Records - Office of the Sheriff - County of Santa Clara (

    90 days or longer.

    No, Record Sealing motions are processed by the District Attorney’s Office.

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