Process for Expunging/Setting Aside Juvenile Records in Michigan

Expungement is the judge-ordered removal of a criminal record from public view, for a juvenile with not more than one juvenile offense and no felony convictions.

The Application: You must complete an application for expungement from the court where you were convicted. You will also need a certified copy of the judgment of sentence, probation order, or register of actions. The proper form for juveniles is JC66. Call the clerk of the court to get the exact date of both the disposition and your offense. You will need both to fill out the application.

You should also go to a Michigan law enforcement agency and ask to be fingerprinted on a Michigan Applicant Fingerprint card (RI-8). Complete the personal information on the card and pay any necessary fees. Make sure that the place labeled "FBI & State" is marked in block E of the card under "Search Requirements."

Sign your application before a notary public or the clerk of the court, and be sure you have all of the following:

1. One complete set of fingerprints (RI-8).

  • Be sure to ask law enforcement officials what the processing fee is for obtaining these fingerprints and pay it.

2. A certified copy of the order of disposition.
  • You can get one from the court where you were adjudicated as a juvenile.
  • It can be obtained on the day you submit your application.
  • Note that there is a $10 + $1/page fee for obtaining a copy of the order.

3. Application to Set Aside Adjudication (JC66) and all necessary copies.

Submit all documentation to the clerk of the court. There is no fee for filing the application. Once you have your hearing date from the court, you'll also need to serve the application (and notice of hearing) on:

  • the Attorney General of the State of Michigan;
  • the prosecuting official of the county that prosecuted your case; and
  • the Michigan State Police.

Include the fingerprint card (RI-8) and any necessary processing fee with the documents you send to the Michigan State Police (local law enforcement can tell you what the fee will be). You can personally deliver the applications to these entities or you can mail it. Addresses are provided in the application form itself.

The Attorney General reviews all applications for juvenile record expungement to ensure they qualify. The prosecuting official notifies the victims (of assaults in particular) of the possibility of your record's expungement—they have the right to appear at your hearing or to make a written statement. The Michigan State Police will use its copy of your application to prepare a report for the court about any pending charges against you. Your hearing will not occur until the court has received the Michigan State Police's report which, unfortunately, can take several months.

The Hearing: You must attend the hearing on the scheduled hearing date. Bring your copy of the application and a copy of the record of your conviction. When the court clerk calls your case, you will need to state your request (to have your record set aside) before the judge. After this, the way the hearing proceeds depends largely on who shows up. If the prosecuting official and/or the Attorney General's office show up, the court will hear what each has to say before deciding (i.e., do they have any objections?). If neither shows up, the court will decide based on the report from the Michigan State Police and its own records. If your crime was assault or a serious misdemeanor, and any victims provide oral or written statements, the court will consider those statements as well before deciding.

If the judge determines that, on the whole, your circumstances and behavior from the time you were convicted to the time you filed the application have been good enough to warrant expunging your record, the judge will likely set aside your conviction as long as it would not threaten the public welfare. However, the judge is not required to do so—expungement is not guaranteed.

If you do not attend the hearing, your case will be dismissed. Or if you are late to the hearing, your case will also be dismissed. The hearing will most likely take place in the court where you filed your application, so be sure you know how to get there. If and when the judge approves your record's expungement, an order to do so will be filled out, and copies returned to you, the arresting agency, and the Michigan State Police. If your request is granted, the record becomes nonpublic in the Michigan State Police database. If it's denied, nothing changes and your conviction remains public.

The criteria to set aside a conviction for a juvenile offense are found within MCL 712A.18e.

For more information on Michigan's law, click the following articles:

Overview of Michigan Criminal Record Expungements

Expunging or Setting Aside Adult Criminal Records in Michigan: Eligibility

Process for Expunging Adult Criminal Records in Michigan

Expunging/Setting Aside Juvenile Adjudication Records in Michigan

Do I Need an Attorney to Expunge my Criminal Record in Michigan?