Update, Seal or Expunge an FBI Arrest-Fingerprint Record

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Dedham / Westwood FBI Background Checks Attorney

An FBI Identification Record (i.e., the Interstate Identification Index, or III), also commonly called a Criminal History Record or Rap Sheet, is a record of certain information taken from fingerprint submissions retained by the FBI in connection with arrests and, in some instances, federal employment, naturalization or military service. If you were arrested and fingerprinted, you have an FBI record in addition to your state criminal record (called a CORI in Massachusetts).

It is essential to know that an FBI record is not automatically updated, sealed, or expunged once the criminal case against you has ended. Whether you were acquitted, the charges were dismissed or there was another outcome, your FBI record will give your arrest information to anyone doing a criminal background check. As far as they may be concerned, the criminal issue is not resolved if it is not explicitly stated in the FBI record.

Contact a Dedham/Westwood lawyer at the Law Office of Philip L. Arnel.

Additionally, criminal charges that were amended and reduced will not appear if the FBI record is not updated, and the more severe initial charge will continue to appear. In instances where you received a favorable disposition, it may be inferred that you were convicted if the initial FBI record is not updated. This is why it is so important for you to seek the help of a lawyer who knows the details of how to update, seal or expunge an FBI Arrest-Fingerprint Record.

At the Law Office of Philip L. Arnel, we can help you understand how to deal with your FBI record. Attorney Philip Arnel is highly knowledgeable in this area, helping clients through the process of updating, sealing or expunging their FBI records. Since they can be expunged or sealed only in very limited instances, you should update them so that anyone looking at your record understands that it is no longer an issue for you. Attorney Arnel can handle the sealing/expunging of your CORI, and the updating, sealing or expunging of your FBI record. Throughout these processes, he works with the Massachusetts State Police,  the Department of Criminal Justice Information Services, as well as the FBI.

Contact a Massachusetts lawyer at the Law Office of Philip L. Arnel today to discuss how to update, correct, or expunge your FBI record.

Why You Should Update Your FBI Record

If you are not eligible to seal or expunge it, by updating your FBI record, you are effectively eliminating any misinterpretation or misunderstanding, as well as any inconvenience and embarrassment that may stem from the discovery of your record. Most individuals do not realize there is a problem until it is affecting their life. Taking proactive action can minimize or eliminate major problems down the road. Issues can include:

  • Employers doing background checks
  • Public housing applications
  • Private landlord applications
  • Mortgage company background checks
  • School applications

Essentially, anyone who can do a background check on you can access any FBI criminal record information.

The other problem is in regard to travel. When you are at the airport, security officials might conduct a random passenger background check. They are going to do it in the federal – FBI – database. If something comes up and it is incomplete or confusing, they may pull you aside. By the time they figure it out, you have probably missed your flight. A number of our firm’s clients have been in this situation, and embarrassed to be pulled out of line. The same situation may occur if you are trying to cross the border into Canada where motorists, passengers and corporate truckers can be denied entry.

Not Arrested? No FBI Record.

If you were not arrested, brought to the police station, booked and fingerprinted as part of the process, you will not have an FBI criminal record. Individuals who have received only an arraignment summons will have a state record, but no FBI record will exist unless you are actually arrested and fingerprinted.

Contact A Stoughton FBI Records Lawyer

Do not risk future opportunities or embarrassment by failing to update, seal, or expunge your FBI arrest record. Let the Law Office of Philip L. Arnel help. Contact us in Dedham/Westwood, Massachusetts, at 781-708-4137. For more information, please see Update, Seal or Expunge an FBI Record FAQ.