Can a North Carolina DWI Conviction be Expunged?

by Wiley Nickel on Sep. 19, 2013

Criminal DUI-DWI 

Summary: Can a North Carolina DWI Conviction be Expunged? by DWI Lawyer Wiley Nickel

Can a North Carolina DWI Conviction be Expunged?

Until recently the answer has always been NO but a new law on the books changes this for DWI offenders. A DWI always stays on your driving record and criminal history report. It can make it difficult, if not impossible, to find a job involving driving or use of heavy machinery. It is almost certain a Commercial Driver’s License or CDL will not be granted with a DWI conviction on your record. These companies, however, have good reason to turn away DWI offenders from employment, as this limits any type of civil liability due to an accident or injury on the job.  As a DWI attorney, I know all too well that DWI offenders often simply made a mistake and are not criminals or alcoholics. DWIs are very common these days, especially with the legal limit so low.  Until now, there was nothing for people with DWI convictions to do, it was a permanent scar.  Thankfully North Carolina passed a law allowing DWI convictions to be expunged for those who meet very narrow criteria.

For those unaware of what an expungement is or what it does… it basically erases or seals all records from the case. There are many records located in the courthouse, the police department, the District Attorney’s Officer, the State Bureau of Investigation, the FBI, and Administrative Office of the Courts. So as you can imagine, there is an immense amount of paperwork which must be filed to process an expungement. The good news is after an expungement is granted from a District Court Judge, all records from the case will be sealed and/or destroyed. In addition (after the expungement is granted) if anyone asks you whether or not you have been found guilty of a crime, arrested, or given a citation for a crime, you can truthfully answer no without fear of committing perjury.

The new bill became effective December 1st 2012. It essentially outlines the requirements to have a DWI expunged, as well as certain nonviolent misdemeanors and felonies. The most essential requirement is the case must be (1) greater than 15 years old and (2) the individual applying for the expungement must have a clean criminal record (traffic tickets or speeding tickets do not count). There are also two affidavits which must be filed by other people, who can attest to the applicants character and moral fitness. These individuals cannot be related to applicant by blood or marriage. Finally, the applicant must receive consent from the District Attorney’s office in the jurisdiction of the conviction.

If it has been more than 15 years since your DWI conviction, call our Cary office now so we can start the paper work needed to process the expungement petition. We will start preparing affidavits and obtaining criminal record checks. Don’t let an old DWI conviction define who you are on job applications and employers, call us at 919-585-1486 for a free consultation today.  The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel, PLLC is located in Wake County North Carolina and handles DWI cases and misdemeanors in Raleigh, NC.

Who Qualifies?

1. Those DWI Convictions over 15years old.

2. Plus yhose with nothing but a DWI on their criminal record (speeding tickets and traffic offeneses don't count).

Legal Articles Additional Disclaimer is not a law firm and does not offer legal advice. Content posted on is the sole responsibility of the person from whom such content originated and is not reviewed or commented on by The application of law to any set of facts is a highly specialized skill, practiced by lawyers and often dependent on jurisdiction. Content on the site of a legal nature may or may not be accurate for a particular state or jurisdiction and may largely depend on specific circumstances surrounding individual cases, which may or may not be consistent with your circumstances or may no longer be up-to-date to the extent that laws have changed since posting. Legal articles therefore are for review as general research and for use in helping to gauge a lawyer's expertise on a matter. If you are seeking specific legal advice, recommends that you contact a lawyer to review your specific issues. See's full Terms of Use for more information.