If you are getting impatient while waiting for your expungement case to go forward, you are not alone. Oregon courts are currently dealing with huge backlogs in their expungement systems.
According to news reports, the problem stems largely from a law that went into effect in 2022. Senate Bill 397 greatly increased the number of people eligible for expungement. As a result, the number of expungement applications skyrocketed. Unfortunately, the courts lack the resources to meet this increased demand.
After Senate Bill 397, Multnomah County went from about 50 per month to more than 800 per month. It now has a backlog of around 15,000 cases.
Motion to set aside
Expungement is a legal process that can seal records of arrest and conviction for certain types of crimes. Sealing these records can be very important for people who are trying to put their legal troubles behind them, as a criminal history can interfere with employment and many other parts of a person’s life.
To begin the process, you make what is known as a motion to set aside your criminal or arrest record. If you are eligible and the court grants your motion, your record is sealed.
It’s important to note that sealing your records with the court doesn’t necessarily mean they disappear everywhere. You may still have to disclose an arrest or conviction when under oath, including in some immigration proceedings.
However, sealing criminal records can go a long way when you’re trying to rebuild your life. It is wise to speak to a professional to learn more about whether your case is eligible for expungement, and to learn what you should expect from the process.