Sealing / Expunging
Because you were charged with an offense as a juvenile, Ohio law allows you to have your juvenile record sealed or expunged. The following is an explanation of the process that you must follow to seal or expunge your record.
  1. If your offense was aggravated murder, murder, rape, sexual battery, or gross sexual imposition, your record cannot be sealed.
  2. For other delinquency, unruly and juvenile traffic offenses, you may apply for an order to seal your record if two years have passed after any order made by the Court has ended. This includes orders such as fines, court costs, restitution, probation, community service, no contact orders etc. If you have been placed in a juvenile institution or other facility, you may not apply until two years after you have received an unconditional discharge from such institution or facility.
  3. Applying to seal your record doesn't automatically mean that it will be sealed. The Juvenile Court must find that you have been rehabilitated to a satisfactory degree. The Court will consider your age, the nature of the case, the cessation or continuation of delinquent, unruly, or criminal behavior, your education and employment history and any other circumstances that may relate to your rehabilitation. The Court will notify the prosecutor of your application, and may schedule a hearing. You should bring any witnesses or evidence to the hearing that may assist the Court in making its determination.
  4. “Seal a record” means to remove a record from the main file of similar records and to secure it in a separate file that contains only sealed records accessible only to the Juvenile Court.
  5. After your record has been sealed, your record will automatically be expunged after a period of 5 years or when you reach age 23, whichever occurs sooner. You may apply to the Juvenile Court to have your sealed record expunged sooner. If you are already 23 years old, when your record is approved to be sealed it will also automatically be expunged.
  6. How is "expunging a record" different than "sealing a record"? Though a sealed record is separated and not accessible in most circumstances, it physically exists. To “expunge a record” means to destroy, delete, and erase a record, as appropriate for the record’s physical or electronic form or characteristic. This means that the record is physically destroyed and permanently irretrievable.
  7. If your record is sealed or expunged by the Juvenile Court and someone asks you if you have a record, you may properly reply that no record exists. If asked, the Court will also reply that no record exists.
  8. You may wish to read portions of the Ohio Revised Code, § 2151.355; 2151.356; 2151.357 and 2151.358 for further details, available at most libraries, and on the internet.

Application for sealing by juvenile.pdf

Application for early expungement by juvenile.pdf

Notice regarding use of sealed records
Per your request, you are inspecting or being provided a copy of sealed records. As is applicable to the nature of your request, please be advised that:

If you are the person subject of the records: the law permits you to properly reply that no record exists regarding any record that is sealed. If asked, the Court will also reply that no record exists.

If you are a law enforcement officer, a prosecutor, or an assistant of either and the record pertains to a felony act of violence: you are permitted to use the records only for a valid law enforcement or prosecutorial purpose.

If you are a party to a civil action based upon a case for which records have been sealed: you are permitted to use and/or copy the records only as needed for the civil action. The records are otherwise confidential.

For further information regarding sealed records, please see Ohio Revised Code § 2151.355 through § 2151.358.
Inspection by juvenile.pdf Inspection by others.pdf
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100 North Park Avenue, Suite 224 Fremont, Ohio 43420  |  (419) 334-6200 (Juvenile Phone)  |  (419) 334-6211 (Probate Phone)  |  (419) 334-6210 (Fax)