On October 12, 2020 Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed Michigan’s Clean Slate legislation into law. These seven bills — House Bill 4980-4985 and HB 5120 — automatically expunge simple misdemeanors and non-assaultive felonies from the records of hundreds of thousands of Michiganders who have lived crime-free for at least seven years, and make it possible for thousands more to apply for the expungement of other old convictions.

The bills included in the Clean Slate legislative package are:

  • House Bill 4980: Creates an automated process for expunging eligible misdemeanors after seven years and eligible non-assaultive felonies after 10 years.
  • HB 4981: For the first time, makes most convictions for traffic offenses — which constitute half of all criminal cases in Michigan — eligible for expungement.
  • HB 4982: Creates a process to set aside most marijuana convictions that would have been legal as of Dec. 6, 2018, the date recreational marijuana was legalized in Michigan.
  • HB 4983: Reduces the waiting period to file a petition to expunge a record of a misdemeanor conviction to three years.
  • HB 4984: Increases the number of misdemeanors and felonies a person can have expunged to an unlimited number of non-assaultive misdemeanors and up to three felonies — however, a person cannot have more than two assaultive felonies expunged in a lifetime, or have multiple convictions of the same crime expunged if the maximum sentence for that crime is 10 or more years of incarceration.
  • HB 4985: Allows multiple convictions for certain offenses arising on “one bad night” to become eligible for expungement as a single offense.
  • HB 5120: Creates a rebuttal process for marijuana expungements and specifies that the burden of proof is on prosecutors.

HB 4980, the bill to automate expungements, will require a two-year phase-in once funds are appropriated to create technological systems that will allow court, police and state computer systems to communicate with each other. The rest of the bills are scheduled to take effect in April 2021.

Download>> Clean Slate FAQ October 27, 2020