Pardons in Connecticut
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Connecticut Pardon Frequently Asked Questions

What types of pardons are available? 
There are two types of pardons:
1) An Expungement pardon corrects the official criminal record through an erasure.  You can apply to the Board for an Expungement pardon three years after the date of the most recent misdemeanor conviction. 
2)  A Provisional pardon is a pardon that does not expunge your criminal record, but it does make it illegal for an employer not to hire you based solely on your criminal record. 

Am I eligible for a pardon?
That depends on how long it has been since the conviction date for the offense that is to be pardoned.  You must wait five years after the date of conviction for a felony and three years from the date of conviction for a misdemeanor if you want a full pardon. 

How can I get a pardon application?
The pardon application is available at the official D.O.C. web site at www.ct.gov/doc/bopp or you can call the Board of Pardons and Paroles’ office at (203)-805-6643 for assistance.

Is there a deadline date to apply?
There is no deadline date and the Board of Pardons processes applications on a first come, first serve basis. 

How long will the Pardons process take?
This may vary, but it will take approximately twelve months in order for The Board, the State Police, and the Judicial Department to review the criminal record of the applicant.

What is on my State Police Criminal History Sheet?
Crimes listed:
Most convictions within the state of Connecticut
Not listed:
Federal or out of state charges
Certain Driving Under the Influence (DUI) and Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) and Reckless Driving charges.
Some non-fingerprinted convictions

Regardless, the individual requesting the pardon is responsible for identifying and listing all previous offenses.

I cannot remember the date of my crime nor the details.  What should I put on my application form?
All offenses that have been convicted and explanations of these offenses are required.  The Board may deny the application if these things are omitted.

Why do I need to pay a fee to the State Police?
The Board does not charge for applying for a pardon, however, a check or money order must be paid to the State Police Department of Public Safety (DPS) for the cost of producing your Criminal History sheet.   

Do I need to get all the police reports if I have multiple offenses?
Yes, a police report must be submitted for each offense, if the arrest occurred within the last ten years ago.

Does the Board have to know about Misdemeanors and Infractions?
All offenses that you have been convicted of, including misdemeanors, must be listed.  Infractions are generally not considered for a pardon.

Do I need to complete the fingerprint card to get my criminal history from the State Police?  I have a background check from my previous employer. 
Yes, a finger print card, the ‘Criminal History Request’ form, and the fee for it must be presented to the State Police in order to get your Criminal History sheet.  Background checks from previous employers do not count as a substitute for the document from the State Police.

When I re-apply do I have to use new references? Also, can you send me a copy of my old application?
You may use the same references; however you must complete a new application for the Board to review.     

Do I need an attorney or other legal representation to apply for a pardon? Does having such representation improve my chances of getting a pardon?
You do not need a lawyer or any other representation to apply for a pardon. The Board of Pardons and Paroles treats all applications in the same manner.  That being said, having a lawyer help you prepare your packet and prepare you to speak at your pardon hearing can help you be the best prepared applicant and make the process easier.

What happens to my pending court case while I am applying for a pardon?
If you have pending cases, the Board will not review nor hear your case.

How many hearings are there per year?
There are currently eight full hearings per year.

Why does the process take so long?
The large number of applications received by the Board of Pardons and the thought that the Board puts into every case means that the process can take up to twelve months to complete.  The record checks that need to be completed and the sheer logistics involved in clearing criminal history also contribute to the length of the process. 

Will I have to appear at the Pardons Hearing?
Yes, the Board will require your presence at the Hearing.  You will be notified by letter of the Board’s requirements regarding appearances.

How does the Board decide who does or does not get a pardon?
The Board considers the severity of the offense, the impact on the victim and the victim’s output, past criminal history, work history since the offense occurred and how much time has passed since the commission of the original offense when deciding whether or not to grant a pardon.  The States Attorneys opinion is also taken into consideration.  The Board may consider any other relevant information.  Volunteer and community service activities on the part of the applicant are encouraged. 

If I am denied because not enough time has passed, then how much time is enough time?
Regardless of eligibility (three years for misdemeanor and five for a felony), if the Board determines that you are not suitable for a pardon, then your case will be denied.  

If I get denied then what are my chances the next time I apply?
The pardon process is based on an individual’s eligibility and suitability; however the ultimate outcome of a pardon application cannot be predicted.

If I am denied, what can I do to guarantee that my pardon will be granted in the future?
There is no guarantee that a pardon will be granted.

If I am denied a pardon, do I have to wait an entire year from the hearing date to re-apply for a pardon?
Generally you must wait one year from the date of denial before you can reapply.  The Board may at its discretion specify a longer waiting period.  The letter of denial will specify the Board’s requirements.

If I am granted a pardon, will all of my records be expunged, including the application that I sent to your office?

Your application will remain on file with the Board, however, if you are granted a full pardon than the offense(s) pardoned will be expunged from the criminal record database.


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