Criminal and Traffic Laws to Clear Your Record
Beginning January 1, 2004, Illinois law was amended to permit people with qualifying arrests, felonies, misdemeanor supervisions and misdemeanor convictions to ask the court to either expunge or seal the records related to their cases. The law is designed to let people clear their records with or without an attorney. On this page and the associated links, the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County provides helpful information to assist customers in clearing their records.
Criminal and Traffic Expungement Guidelines and Forms
Under specific circumstances, Illinois law allows felony, misdemeanor, or municipal ordinance violation records in Criminal and Traffic cases to be expunged or sealed. If you qualify, your records will either be expunged or expunged and sealed by law enforcement agencies, and will be sealed by the Clerk's Office. "Expunged" records are destroyed. "Sealed" records are closed and restricted from public access, but are not destroyed. For more information on your eligibility and the process, including the necessary forms, please click here
. If you are not eligible for expungement of your records, please check to see if you are eligible for sealing of your records under the "Criminal and Traffic Sealing Guidelines and Forms" link, below.
Criminal and Traffic Sealing Guidelines and Forms
Beginning January 1, 2004, Illinois law permits a person to have his or her records in certain misdemeanor or municipal ordinance violations in Criminal and Traffic cases to be sealed. Sealed records are closed and restricted from public access, but are not destroyed. For more information on your eligibility and the process, including the necessary forms, please click here.
Identity Theft/Factual Innocence Guidelines and Forms
Beginning January 1, 2004, if someone has falsely identified himself or herself using your identity during his/her arrest or conviction, Illinois law allows for you to clear your name from these records.
For additional information on expungement, sealing, and identity theft, please visit the Illinois' State Appellate Defender's website Expungement page
Illinois Prisoner Review Board
The Illinois Prisoner Review Board’s mission is to function under statutory authority as a quasi-judicial body with a primary focus on public safety.
It further acts as a checks and balances on other state and local institutions. The Board imposes release conditions for incarcerated individuals who are exiting penal facilities, revokes and restores good conduct credits from inmates, and conducts hearings to determine whether parolees have violated conditions of parole. Also, it notifies victims and their families when an inmate is about to be released from custody.
Finally, the Board makes confidential recommendations to the Governor relative to clemency petitions. Applications for Certificates of Good Conduct and applications for Certificates of Relief from Disabilities are located on the Illinois Prisoner Review Board
website. If you are seeking a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities and you have been incarcerated or if your case was in another state, you must file your application with the Illinois Prisoner Review Board. If you have never been incarcerated, you must file your petition with the Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County. [The Illinois Prisoner Review Board calls them applications when you file with them, and we call them petitions when you file with us.]
For Juvenile Expungement Forms, click the links below:
- Petition to Expunge Juvenile Records (Expungement) - CCJ 0040
- Petition to Expunge Juvenile Records (Expungement) - CCJ 0041
- Notice for a Petition to Expunge Juvenile Records (Expungement) - CCJ 0042
JUVENILE RECORD? ERASE IT WITH ILAO’S EASY FORM!
You may have a juvenile record if you were arrested or charged in Illinois when you were 17 years old or younger. Although access to these records is limited, they might still affect your ability to find housing, work, or education.
Use ILAO’s Expunge juvenile records program to complete forms to request that your juvenile record be expunged (erased). This program creates standardized statewide forms that can be used in any county in Illinois. The program determines eligibility for each offense and puts together the correct forms for you. Learn more about clearing your juvenile record.
Certificate of Relief From Disabilities
If you were incarcerated or your conviction was in another state, file your application before the Illinois Prisoner Review Board
on the application form available on their website. If you were not incarcerated, file your petition with the Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County. For the Clerk's Office's Certificate of Relief from Disabilities forms, please click here
. For Notice of Filings forms, please click here
Certificate of Good Conduct
All applications for Certificates of Good Conduct must be filed before the Illinois Prisoner Review Board. Application forms are available on the Illinois Prisoner Review Board