Let’s deal with the bad news first: If you have been formally convicted of a DUI in Virginia, you can’t get it expunged. It’s a permanent record.

That includes a jury verdict, bench verdict, or a guilty plea.

Some other states provide an avenue for expungement or sealing, even for those who have been convicted. For example, through a state diversion program for first-time offenders.

Not so in Virginia.

But you can get a dropped charge or a “not guilty ” verdict expunged from the record. Y

If you do get a DUI charge expunged, it doesn’t disappear entirely. The state still keeps a record of the charge. But  your arrest record won’t show up in any public records searches or background checks. The only way to break the seal is through a court order.

That mans potential employers, landlords, creditors, and others won’t see any arrest records, mug shots, or court proceedings arising from your arrest – as long as you weren’t found guilty or pled guilty to the charge.

How To Expunge a DUI Arrest

If you qualify, the process begins with the circuit court that adjudicated your case. You or your attorney must file a formal petition for expungement, along with a certified copy of your case disposition from that court.

Expungement is not automatic. The DA  may choose to contest the expungement. However, if it’s your first offense and a misdemeanor, the DA has to show good cause why the expungement should not be granted. In other words, the burden is on the state to show that it’s in the public interest for the state to deny the petition.

If you were charged with a felony, or you have a prior arrest record, then the burden shifts to you, the petitioner.

To get your record expunged in Virginia, you must show that leaving your arrest and subsequent court proceedings on the record constitutes an manifest injustice.

For example, you must show proof that your employment prospects are suffering as a result of the arrest, or you’ve been turned down for educational opportunities as a result of it.


About Select Insurance Group

Select Insurance Group, AKA SelectSR22Insurance.com, is a specialty insurance broker specifically with the high risk driver in mind. While we’re happy to take all kinds, we take special pride in our expertise an ability to add value for non-standard risk drivers of all kinds.

First, we’re not a “captive agency.” Some agents are captive to just one insurance company, and can’t sell insurance from any other company, no matter what the customer’s situation. At Select Insurance Group, we shop your application among as many as a dozen and sometimes more insurance carriers – all eager to do business with higher-risk drivers. That means they know they have to compete for your business. It also means you can be confident you’re getting the best coverage at the most competitive price possible.

If you’ve got a DUI on your record, whether you just got arrested for it or whether it’s years in the past, contact us today. Chances are excellent we can save you money, improve your coverage, or both!