People convicted of crimes are often ineligible for government-assisted housing, public benefits, and certain forms of employment. Convictions can affect the person for years beyond the satisfaction of his sentence. The Tenth Circuit Public Defender office works to help clients address issues that lead them to committing crimes so that they may lead more productive lives and get off the cycle of being in and out of the criminal justice system. As a result, the Circuit Public Defender created the Clean Slate Program.
The purpose of the Clean Slate Program is to help clean the criminal records of good people who made bad decisions in their past and need help to take full advantage of a second chance. South Carolina laws provide for the expungement of certain criminal offenses from a criminal record.
Under the Clean Slate Program, a person can bring a copy of his criminal record in to the Public Defender office and we will review the record to see if there are any charges that meet the requirements of State law to be removed from the criminal history. Some charges can be removed at no charge and some may require the payment of the required filing fee with the Solicitor’s office. If we find that there are charges that qualify to be removed at no charge, we will prepare and submit the required forms for the person to get the charges removed from the record. If we find that there are charges that qualify to be removed but require the payment of the filing fee, we will prepare the forms for the person and provide him with the forms and instructions on where to go file the forms and pay the filing fee.