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What is an Expungement Mitigation Letter?

Posted by Jason Beahm | Mar 20, 2023 | 0 Comments

An expungement mitigation letter is a document submitted to the judge in a criminal case, usually around the time of filing the expungement, requesting the judge to consider granting an expungement for the defendant. Since judges often have wide discretion in these matters, a well-crafted letter can be persuasive in helping them decide in favor of granting the expungement.

To write an effective expungement mitigation letter, consider following these five key tips:

Write a clear introduction: Begin the letter by addressing the judge and introducing the purpose of the letter. Make it clear that you are seeking expungement for the defendant.

Introduce yourself and establish credibility: Provide information about who you are, your relationship to the defendant, and any relevant credentials or experiences that may lend credibility to your perspective.

Provide reasons for expungement: Detail the reasons why you believe the defendant deserves expungement. These reasons could include personal growth, rehabilitation, family circumstances, or other mitigating factors.

Tell a story: Share a personal anecdote or story that illustrates the defendant's character, growth, or contributions to their community. This can help humanize the defendant and make a stronger case for expungement.

Provide contact information: Close the letter by offering your contact information, in case the judge wishes to follow up with any questions or requests for additional information.

Expungement mitigation letters are often more impactful when written by their family members, loved ones, or professional contacts. These letters aim to provide information that may persuade a judge to grant an expungement in both misdemeanor and felony cases. They are sometimes referred to as character reference letters.

By following these guidelines, you can craft a compelling expungement mitigation letter that may help the defendant obtain a favorable outcome in their case.

About the Author

Jason Beahm

Founding Attorney Profile Credentials Associations Bio Jason Beahm is the Founder and President of Beahm Law. Voted “Best of SF” four out of the past five years by SF Weekly Magazine, Attorney Beahm practices in the areas of DUI, criminal defense, and personal injury. He is passionate ...

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