Unfortunately, in North Carolina, it is not possible to have a DWI expunged from your criminal record. Once you are convicted of a DWI, it will remain on your record permanently. However, there may be some mitigating circumstances that could allow you to have the DWI (driving while impaired) stricken off your record. These include:
- If you get a not guilty verdict in your trial
- The charges are dropped or if the case is dismissed.
The lookback period
The lookback period is the period of time over which prior DWI convictions can be considered when determining the level of offense for a current DWI charge. For a traffic misdemeanor, the lookback period is seven years, while for a felony, it’s 10 years.
The repercussions for DWIs are serious. If you get a second offense on your record within two years of your first, you’re liable to face up to two years of imprisonment, up to a $2,000 fine and a license suspension of up to four years.
Habitual DWIs could result in forfeiting your vehicle and license to the state permanently. It could also lead to compulsory substance abuse treatment and a prison sentence of up to 12 months.
Should I bother getting my DWI record expunged?
If you did not get convicted, it would benefit you to get an expunction because potential employers, landlords, etc., will have access to this information. Since it’s a matter of public record, it could have a negative impact on future undertakings.
Take the necessary measures to clear your record to protect your future self.