Q: What is a pardon?
A: A Pardon is an official statement of forgiveness by the Governor. It does not erase your criminal record, however, it changes the convictions found on your criminal record from guilty to "pardoned".
Q: What does expungement mean?
A: An expungement seals a criminal record, so that it does not appear on state-run background checks.
Q: I have an adult conviction, but it was only a misdemeanor, am I eligible for an expungement?
A: If you have an adult conviction, you are most likely not eligible for an expungement. However, you may become eligible for an expungement only if you successfully receive a pardon for your adult misdemeanor conviction.
Q: How many years must past before my DE criminal history gets sealed from employers?
A: DE will not seal a record automatically after any amount of years.
Q: Does Delaware seal a Juvenile Criminal History when an individual turns 18?
A: No, unfortunately Delaware does not automatically seal one's Juvenile Record when the individual turns 18. In Delaware, you must apply to Family Court first.
Q: If I have charges in DE and another state, can DE pardon/expunge the other state charges as well?
A: No, the state of Delaware can only pardon/expunge Delaware state offenses only.
Q: I see the term "Nolle Prosequi" on my criminal history report, what does this term mean?
A: "Nolle Prosequi" means "we shall no longer prosecute", therefore it is not a conviction.
Q: If I have been arrested but never convicted, will the charge still show up on a DE state run background check?
A: Yes, your arrest history is also documented on DE state-run background checks.
Q: How long does the pardon process take?
A: Due to the overwhelming amount of applicants, it may take well over a year for the entire pardon process.
Q: If I have a felony, does that disqualify me from obtaining a pardon or an expungement?
A: Under the current law, it is unlikely that a felony conviction will be expunged. However, you may still apply to receive a pardon for your felony convictions.