There are various options to seal criminal matters in New York.
- Upon acquittal, or dismissal for other reasons, such as an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal (ACOD), the records are sealed, and the defendant’s fingerprints and photos are returned or destroyed pursuant to Criminal Procedure Law section 160.50.
- With a plea to a noncriminal offense, e.g., Disorderly Conduct or Harassment 2nd degree, sealing occurs pursuant to Criminal Procedure Law section 160.55. Sealing occurs unless the prosecution moves upon not less than five days’ notice to stop the sealing in the interests of justice.
- If a person under age 19 receives a youthful offender adjudication, the criminal records are made confidential.
- Where a defendant has completed judicial diversion, drug court or other judicially sanctioned drug treatment program and has completed the sentence, “conditional sealing” is available under Criminal Procedure Law section 160.58.
- A person with up to two convictions, but not more than one felony, may also apply for sealing after at least ten years have passed since sentence was imposed or, if incarceration, 10 years since release from jail or prison under Criminal Procedure Law section 160.59.