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In the spring of 2012, Utah Governor Gary Herbert signed House Bill 13 into law. The bill, which had broad support in both houses of the legislature, makes it possible for certain sex and kidnap offenders to have their names removed from the Utah State Sex and Kidnap Offender Registries in about half the time.

Normally, someone who has been convicted of Kidnapping, Unlawful Detention, or Unlawful Sexual Activity with a Minor or 16/17 Year Old would be required to register as an offender for a period of ten years after completion of their sentence. Under the new law offenders who have only committed one of these crimes, and have an otherwise clean criminal record, can petition to have their names removed in as few as five years after sentencing is completed.

Of course, victims and prosecutors of the original crime will have the opportunity to object and demonstrate that removing the offender from the registry before ten years have passed would not be in the interest of justice. “That is one of the reasons someone who may be eligible relief under this new law should seek the help of an attorney” says Mathew Higbee. Mr. Higbee is an attorney who has handled thousands of expungement and record-clearing cases nationwide, including hundreds in the State of Utah. “It is very rare not to receive some type of objection from the prosecutor’s office or a victim. An experienced attorney will help you overcome these and persuade the Court to grant your petition,” he said.

A person seeking to have their name removed early must meet strict requirements. In passing the law, the legislature created multiple layers of oversight to ensure that only those people who are no longer considered threats to public safety can be granted early removal from the registries. The burden is on the person seeking early name removal to prove they are rehabilitated. Also, the process can take between four and seven months. If you believe you qualify, or may soon qualify, it is important to contact an attorney experienced in record clearing to help you with the process.

Written by Record Clearing

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