What is a Petition to Seal Criminal Records & How to Fill out a Petition Yourself for FREE

By Attorney Rachel A. Moss

In Arizona, a petition to seal criminal case records is a legal process that allows individuals who have been convicted of a non-dangerous, non-serious offense to request that their criminal records be sealed from public view. This means that records will not be accessible to the general public, including potential employers, landlords, and members of the community.

The eligibility to petition to seal generally depends on the nature and severity of the offense and the amount of time that has passed since the individual completed their sentence. The process typically involves filing a petition with the court that sentenced the individual and attending a court hearing where a judge will review that petition and determine whether to grant the request.

It’s important to note that while a petition to seal your records can provide a level of privacy for individuals with criminal records, it does not erase the conviction or remove it from all government records. Law enforcement, prosecutors, and victims may still have access to the records, and the sealed convictions can still be used to enhance sentencing in future criminal cases.

A person may file a petition to seal all case records related to a criminal offense if:

  • You have been convicted of a crime.
  • The time frames in ARS 13-911 (E) (F) have passed.
  • You have completed all terms and conditions of the sentence that was imposed by the court.
  • Repayment of all monetary obligations and restitution to victims have been finalized.
  • You have been charged with a criminal offense and the charge was subsequently dismissed or resulted in a not guilty verdict at trial.
  • You have been arrested for a criminal offense and no charges were filed.

There are exceptions on who cannot file for a petition to seal:

  • You have been sentenced as a dangerous offender.
  • You have been convicted of a dangerous crime against children.
  • You have been convicted of a serious offense or violent or aggravated felony.
  • You have been convicted of an offense that involves the discharge or threatening exhibition of a deadly weapon.
  • You have been convicted of sex trafficking.

How to Fill out a Petition to Seal Criminal Records for FREE

It is important to note that with the new ARS 13-911 law, you have the option to handle the process on your own and avoid spending thousands of dollars on attorney fees.

After confirming that you are eligible to petition to seal your records, the next step is to gather all the necessary documents for filing. To improve the efficiency of the petition process, it is essential to provide as much information about your cases as possible, including details about your arrest, any other charges that are not related to the crimes you wish to seal, and any relevant case information.

Once eligibility and paperwork have been established, knowing when you can file your petition is key. If you file too early, this may set you back.

You will be able to file a petition to seal if the following time periods have passed:

  • 10 years for a class 2 or 3 felony
  • 5 years for a class of 4,5, or 6 felonies
  • 3 years for a class 1 misdemeanor
  • 2 years for a class 2 or 3 misdemeanor

It is crucial to know the proper court in which to file your petition during this process. Filing the petition in the incorrect court can lead to the dismissal of the petition, resulting in a no ruling. To avoid this, it is important to follow the appropriate procedures and file your petition in the correct court.

For more information or to start your record sealing process, visit:

However, if you or someone you know requires assistance with petitioning to seal your criminal case records in the state of Arizona, please contact the Attorneys For Freedom Law Firm or call our office at (480)-755-7110 for more information.

Joe O.
Joe O.
23:31 21 Mar 23
Tony B.
Tony B.
00:19 16 Mar 23
Attorneys for Freedom is super friendly and very relationship oriented. I felt at home the moment I... sat down. My lawyer Andy and paralegal Brittany were awesome. My case was unique and required research that would have been instrumental to navigating my case had it moved to a formal charge. Fortunately, the case sort of resolved without further legal intervention. I would definitely hire them again (I hope I don't need to).read more
Steve P.
Steve P.
16:33 28 Feb 23
I can not say enough about my experience with Attorneys For Freedom and especially Rachel Moss. I... was involved in an extremely stressful situation and I experienced her as very compassionate and open to my concerns. She was able to synthesize and relate the germane issues about the situation with me and I really appreciated that she was open and able to also consult with other attorneys in the office. I found Rachel to be knowledgeable, reliable and available. She (and the firm) get 5+ stars from me and I would recommend her (and A4F) without reservation to others.read more
Morgan V.
Morgan V.
18:59 27 Feb 23
Truly helped us with our case. Definitely would recommend to anyone!
Oscar V.
Oscar V.
23:25 24 Feb 23
I just want to thank Mark and all of his staff for coming through for me. I was thinking that I was... gonna face some time, but he is a man of his word and got me probation like he said he would. Thanks Mark Victor! You gave my life back to me. I would and will recommend anyone going through some kind of legal matters. You and his staff are the greatest . Also I'd like to thank Andrew C. Marcantel for hanging in there with me. I appreciate you all very much. Thanks againSincerely.O. Vegaread more