If you have a criminal record in Colorado, you may be wondering whether it’s worth the effort to have it sealed. After all, there are costs associated with sealing a record—both financial and emotional. But there are also many potential benefits that come with sealing your record, including improved job prospects and access to housing options.
The Costs of Sealing Your Criminal Record in Colorado
Two main costs are associated with sealing your Colorado criminal record—financial and emotional costs.
The Financial Costs of Sealing Your Record
The financial cost of sealing your record depends on the type of crime you were charged with or arrested for and other factors, such as the amount of time since the incident occurred.
Generally speaking, the cost of sealing a Colorado criminal record ranges from $50 to $200. This does not include the cost of working with an attorney to get your record sealed, but many find the additional money well worth it to ensure everything is done correctly and no mistakes occur.
The Emotional Costs of Sealing Your Record
Sealing your criminal record is not easy—it can be stressful and emotionally draining. You may have to relive difficult memories or face old emotions while gathering documents or talking to attorneys.
Additionally, it can be challenging to open up about past convictions when applying for jobs or housing, even if they have been sealed.
The Benefits of Sealing Your Record
Despite those costs, there are many potential benefits to getting your record sealed – most of which are related to how many problems a criminal record can cause. Let’s look at several issues and benefits.
- Improved job prospects. Employers may not decide to hire you if they do not see criminal records on your background check. However, one thing is absolutely certain: if you have a criminal record, there are a number of employers who won’t even bring you in for an interview. Because of this, getting your record removed so that it won’t appear on background checks is a huge boon to anyone looking for a job.
- Access to more housing options. Additionally, having a sealed criminal record can give you access to certain housing options that might otherwise be closed off due to an open criminal history. Simply put, many landlords have no interest in providing housing to someone with a criminal record because they will see you as more of a risk.
- Improved personal life. Lastly, having a criminal record may be a dealbreaker for certain people in your life – or whom you would like to be a part of your life. For example, if you are looking for a relationship, your criminal record may be an impediment because it isn’t uncommon for potential dating partners these days to run background checks before meeting with someone. It can put a stop to romance before it even starts. On the flip side, sealing your record shows people you’ve taken responsibility for past mistakes and made positive changes to move forward in life in a healthy way.
Ultimately, whether or not to seal your Colorado criminal record is up to you. That being said, the potential benefits that could come with preventing others from seeing your record could drastically improve your quality of life.
Take some time to carefully consider all aspects before making any decisions regarding this important matter, and do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions.
About the Author:
Kimberly Diego is a criminal defense attorney in Denver practicing at The Law Office of Kimberly Diego. She obtained her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and her law degree at the University of Colorado. She was named one of Super Lawyers’ “Rising Stars of 2012 & 2019-2022” and a “Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Colorado” for 2012-2022 by The National Trial Lawyers. Both honors are limited to a small percentage of practicing attorneys in each state. Additionally, Expertise names her to its lists of the 25 Best Denver DUI Lawyers and 21 Best Denver Criminal Defense Lawyers, both in 2020-2022. Ms. Diego has also been recognized for her work in domestic violence cases.