Colorado law allows a person who is the primary subject of a criminal justice record to petition the court in the district in which any arrest and criminal records information pertaining to that person is located to seal those records (except for basic identification information) in the following circumstances:
- If the records are a record of official actions involving a criminal offense for which the person was not charged or entered into a diversionary program;
- If the case was completely dismissed; or
- If the person was acquitted of all of the charges.
Arrest or criminal record information may not be sealed if an offense is not charged due to a plea agreement in a separate case, a dismissal occurs as part of a plea agreement in a separate case, or a defendant still owes restitution, fines, court costs, or other fees n the case.
After one files a petition to seal criminal records, and after the court finds that the petition is sufficient on its face and that no other grounds exist at that time for the court to deny it, a hearing is set and the petitioner is required to inform the prosecutor’s office, and any other agencies having possession of the records. After the hearing described is conducted and if the court finds that the harm to the privacy of the petitioner or dangers of unwarranted adverse consequences to the petitioner outweigh the public interest in retaining the records, the court may order that the records be sealed.
If the court seals your criminal records you may properly reply to any inquiry regarding the records that no such records exist. Employers, educational institutions, state and local government agencies, officials, and employees are not allowed, in any application or interview or in any other way, require an applicant to disclose any information contained in sealed records.