When you are charged with a crime, your team can get the judge to dismiss it. During the pre-trial hearing, they may prove the other side lacks enough evidence or their alleged facts do not constitute a crime. The prosecutor may also voluntarily dismiss the case.
But will the charge be on your record after being dismissed? Here is what you should know:
It will be
Despite your case being dismissed, it will stay on your record. It can show up on background checks.
In Maryland, courts automatically expunge cases where all the charges were dismissed after three years, but you can do it earlier by filing Form CC-DC-CR-072C. The latter route may be a good move, as it protects your employment and housing opportunities.
How to handle potential employers and landlords before expunction
Before your dismissed charge is expunged, potential employers and landlords may know about it. Thus, you should be careful about the answers you provide when they ask about your criminal history.
You don’t want to lie since they may learn about it sooner or later. But also, you don’t need to disclose every detail. You can briefly discuss what led to the situation and what you learned.
Nonetheless, the best solution is to get the case expunged. If an employer asks if you have ever faced a criminal charge after expunction, you can answer no.
Unfortunately, your charge being dismissed does not mean you have a clean record. The charge will be on your record until you expunge it or after three years. It will help to get legal guidance to obtain more information about your case and understand your options.