The Washington State Second Chance Expungement Gap
The following is a summary of the law prepared by law students under the supervision of a professor based on consulting multiple sources. It is only up to date as of the dates shown below and in many cases we had to make judgment calls. Therefore we encourage you to also consult the sources below, as well as the Restoration of Rights Project that include summaries of the law for all 50 states and US territories.
Sources: Washington Courts Guide(October 2019)
Summary of the Law
Subject to some statutory exceptions and additional conditions, Washington’s vacating statute generally permits the expungements of the following for individuals that have no pending criminal charges, open warrants, or active restraining orders against them:
- Misdemeanors and gross misdemeanors, 3 years after completion of the sentence requirements except in the case of domestic violence convictions which have a 5 year waiting period; (RCW 9.96.060)
- Class C felonies, 5 years, and Class B felonies, 10 years after completion of sentence requirements. (RCW 9.94a.640)
Since June of 2019, it is no longer a prerequisite to vacating a charge that there be no additional convictions during the years immediately preceding the vacation, as long as there have been no additional charges during the duration of the waiting period.
Not modeled: RCW 9.96.060(3) (vacatur for victims of human trafficking), stale non-conviction data pursuant to the Criminal Records Privacy Act, Wash. Rev. Code § 10.97.060.