Having a criminal record can hinder your ability to get a job, a lease, admission to a college, and a professional license. But the process of sealing your criminal record in Nevada is extremely confusing and time-consuming, and one mistake will set you back to square one.
Our Las Vegas records sealing attorneys have sealed more than a thousand criminal records, and we know how to get it done right and on the first try. And once your record gets sealed, your background check should come back clear (with very few exceptions).
Am I eligible for a record seal in Nevada?
The only convictions that cannot be sealed in Nevada are:
- Sex crimes,
- Crimes against children,
- Invasion of the home with a deadly weapon pursuant to NRS 205.067, and
- Felony DUI.
Otherwise, every conviction is sealable one to ten years after the case ends. And if the charge gets dismissed (meaning that there is no conviction), then we can pursue a record seal right away.
The wait times to get a record seal in Nevada are outlined in this table:
|Nevada conviction||Record sealing waiting period|
|Misdemeanors except battery domestic violence, DUI, battery, harassment, stalking, and violation of a protection order||1 year after the case closes|
|Gross misdemeanors, category E felonies, and misdemeanor battery, harassment, stalking, and violation of a protection order||2 years after the case closes|
|Most category D felonies, category C felonies, or category B felonies except burglary of a residence and felony crimes of violence||5 years after the case closes|
|Misdemeanor DUI and battery domestic violence||7 years after the case closes|
|Category A felonies, burglary of a residence, and felony crimes of violence||10 years after the case closes|
Note that juvenile records are usually sealed automatically when you turn 21 as long as the record was not for a:
But you may be able to get these crimes sealed after turning 30 years old.
Also note that federal cases are usually unsealable.1
How long does record sealing take?
From beginning to end, record sealing can take up to one year in Nevada. Much of this time is waiting for the prosecutors’ office to approve the seal, for the judge to order the seal, and then for the various state agencies to comply with the judge’s order. And there is no way to speed up this process.
Once my record is sealed, can I have guns again?
Record sealing does not restore your rights to possess firearms in Nevada. The only way that people convicted of felonies or domestic violence in Nevada can have firearms again is to get a Nevada Governor’s pardon.
Getting a pardon is even more difficult than getting a record seal and is a lot rarer.2
Do I need an attorney to seal my record?
Everyone seeking to seal their Nevada criminal record is advised to hire an experienced Las Vegas record sealing lawyer to manage the process for them. Otherwise, you would be responsible for doing all the following on your own:
- Obtaining a copy of all the necessary documents, which may include the SCOPE (record) from the police department that arrested/cited you, a criminal history report from the Nevada Department of Public Safety, and court records.
- Composing a “petition to seal” and submitting it to the prosecutor in your case.
- If the prosecutor approves the petition, submitting the petition to the judge.
- If the prosecutor denies the petition, scheduling and appearing at a hearing to argue in favor of the record seal.
- If the judge approves the petition and signs the “order to seal,” obtaining copies of the order (certified copies if necessary) from the court clerk.
- Mailing out a copy of the “order to seal” to all the agencies in Nevada that have a copy of your criminal record along with a cover letter with instructions to follow the “order to seal.”
- Following up with each agency to make sure they complied with the order to seal until they finally send you a compliance letter confirming that they sealed your record.
Record sealing is very technical. And even if you are eligible for a record seal, your petition can be denied based on the wrong formatting or a simple mistake.
If the court rejects your petition to seal, you have to wait two years before trying again. And if your second try is rejected, your record cannot be sealed ever.3
This is why having a Las Vegas record sealing lawyer seal your record is the quickest, easiest, and safest bet.
- NRS 179.245. NRS 179.255. See, for example, Tiffee v. Eighth Judicial Dist. Ct., (2021) 137 Nev. Adv. Op. 20; see also Aragon v. State (In re Aragon), (2020) 476 P.3d 465, 136 Nev. Adv. Op. 75. NRS 62H.130. 18 USC 3607(c) (it may be possible to expunge first-time simple drug possession convictions while under age 21).
- NRS 213.005 – NRS 213.155. Criteria and Application Instructions, Nevada Pardons Board. Nevada Pardon application.
- See note 1. NRS 179.265.