Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Expunging Minor In Possession of Alcohol (PAULA)

A new Iowa law will provide for the expungement of Minor in Possession of Alcohol (PAULA) conviction.

Effective July 1, 2010, Iowa Code section 123.47 will be amended to include an addition subsection that will require courts to expunge a prior conviction for Minor in Possession of Alcohol, commonly known as PAULA (possession of alcohol under legal age) after two years from the conviction if the person has not been convicted of any other offenses. This is similar to the provision that allows public intoxication convictions to be expunged. The new law REQUIRES the court to expunge the conviction if all of the following are shown:

1. Two years have expired since the conviction; and
2. The convicted person demonstrates that they have had no other criminal convictions, other than traffic violations or simple misdemeanor violations of chapter 321 (traffic and related offenses), during that two year period.

Once those two requirements are met, the court is required to expunge the conviction upon receiving the proper petition from the convicted person. When expunging the conviction, the Court is enters an order to that effect and the clerk of court is required to completely remove the conviction from the individuals criminal history data files as well as the files maintained by the department of public safety. That means it will not appear anywhere on a criminal background check and it cannot serve as a prior offense if the individual is charged with a similar offense in the future. The slate truly is wiped clean.

Many people do not get through their high school or college years without being charged with PAULA at some point or another. This new law is a wonderful opportunity for individuals who have made mistakes in the past due to their youth, prevent youthful indiscretions from impacting their future career opportunities.

If you or someone you know has a Minor in Possession of Alcohol (PAULA) conviction muddying up their record feel free to contact Attorney, Scott Michels, of GRL Law to start the process of wiping your slate clean. (515) 226-0500 or 1-877-GRL-LAWS


Matt530 said...

So here is a question: If the MIP occurred before the law was in effect then couldn't it still be wiped if the 2 year "anniversary" occurs since the bill became law? I feel that would be logical because the law as written pertains to the offenders right to petition the expunging of the record at 2 years.

G R L Law said...

Matt530, the answer is yes. The violation does NOT have to have occurred since July 1st. MIP convictions occurring before the passing of the law are now eligible to be expunged.

Anonymous said...

I filed for an expungement and recieved a letter from the state's attorney's office stating that it resists the expungement becuase the conviction came prior to july 1, 2010.

Sarah said...

Would this apply if the violation happened out of state? Would it have to be expunged through that state or is it possible to get is expunged in Iowa?

dahlamb said...

I was charged with two MIP tickets! The first was in January 2008 and the second was in August 2008! However, they are not on my criminal background check. Also, for second one was not charged as a second offense. I know this because I didn't lose my lincense or have to pay an increased fine. I just recently found out that both of my MIP charges are on my driving record. This is making it so I can't get any jobs because I am not able to be covered by thier insurance. When I called and talked to the state record department they said it had to be on there for 5 years because I should have lost my license. This there anything I can do!