Criminal Record Removals in South Africa

Criminal Record Removals are achieved by using one of two methods, Presidential Pardons or Expungements. These are described in greater detail below.

Criminal Record Removals

Presidential Pardons

If a client has been convicted of an offence and a period of ten (10) years has not yet elapsed since the date of conviction, SDF Attorneys can assist such an individual with a Presidential Pardon application.

This application is quite in-depth and complex and must include clear and strong motivations to support your application to have your criminal record removed. Such an application takes approximately 2 years to finalise at the Department of Justice as there are many role players involved in the process. Ultimately the application will end up on the President’s desk and will require his approval – this is discretionary and such an application is therefore unfortunately not guaranteed. It is for this reason that it is recommended that a client utilise our services when preparing such an application, as SDF Attorneys know what to include in the application to make the chances of success as high as possible.

Expungements

If a client has been convicted of an offence and a period of ten (10) years has elapsed since the date of conviction, the client did not serve any direct imprisonment and did not pay a fine of more than R20 000 and the offence was not serious, sexually related or politically motivated, then the client will qualify for an expungement. This process takes approximately 4 months to finalise and is guaranteed, if the client meets the requirements listed above as per the Criminal Procedure Act as amended.

SDF Attorneys will assist the client by completing and submitting all of the required documentation on the client’s behalf and will also follow up with our contacts at the Department of Justice regularly to ensure that the application is being given the necessary amount of attention and to ensure that there are no unnecessary delays in the obtaining of the expungement.

SDF Attorneys charge a once off, all inclusive fee for this service. Such a fee is payable up front and will be refunded if the expungement cannot be completed for whatever reason.

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