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Last updated: 2024-04-12

Check your eligibility to vacate a Washington State conviction

Our free eligibility calculator can check if your conviction qualifies for vacation in less than 10 minutes.

Access Calculator

Open Source Project

We are an open source initiative that emerged following the enactment of Washington State's New Hope Act. Annually, close to 98,000 individuals join the ranks of millions across Washington State who bear the weight of a criminal record. Those impacted by the justice system encounter substantial obstacles in their daily lives even after serving their prison sentences.

Formerly known as Clearviction, our project has transitioned from a volunteer led non-profit to an open-source model, inviting collaboration and contributions so we can better serve our community. If you would like to contribute to the project, please reach out on Github.

How it works

We break down the laws into understandable language.

You answer a few simple yes/no questions.

This helps determine your vacation eligibility in Washington.

We help you explore what comes after determining your vacation eligibility.

Why Vacate?

A conviction vacation seals the offense from your record, giving you a better chance at access to:

Make it easier to find and be approved for rent or purchasing a home.


Reduce barriers to finding and obtaining employment.


Apply for scholarships, programs, degrees, or certificates.

Government Assistance

Receive government help and support.


There are two ways a conviction can be cleared off your record.

"Vacating" partially erases it, and "expunging" completely erases it.

To vacate a conviction means that, as far as society is concerned, the conviction never happened. Your landlord and your workplace won't be able to see your record, but it will still be visible to the police and courts.

To expunge a conviction erases it entirely. Society, the police, and the courts will all treat you like the conviction never happened.

Vacating a conviction is the process of clearing a conviction from your record so it is not visible to the public anymore. Vacating your conviction can remove that crime from some background checks, and you can say legally that you were never convicted of that crime.

The courts can still reference a vacated conviction in a future criminal proceeding, and not all convictions are eligible for vacation.

If you are convicted of a crime, your criminal record will continue to show that conviction in background checks. Having a criminal record might negatively affect your housing, employment, and educational opportunities.

If you are experiencing this, vacating your conviction removes that crime from background checks, and you can say legally that you were never convicted of that crime. This can help you get access to housing, education, employment, volunteering opportunities, and more.

To be eligible to vacate, there are specific criteria that your conviction must meet.

You can use our eligibility calculator to check if your misdemeanor or felony qualifies for vacation.

A request to vacate may be denied for other reasons, and is up to the discretion of the judge. The most common reasons that a request can be denied is if:

  1. the court does not believe that vacating your conviction will be in the interest of society,

  2. you violated probation or have not paid off your fines,

  3. you are otherwise not eligible to vacate that particular conviction, or

  4. there was an inaccuracy in the court records and/or the application.

To vacate your Washington conviction, the process takes on average three to four months, depending on your individual circumstances, the court’s caseload at the time, and whether there are any objections to vacating your conviction.

You will receive a court order vacating the conviction—which has the effect of withdrawing the guilty judgment and dismissing the charges against you. You can then legally state that you were not convicted of the offense.


Your conviction will still be in court records and computerized court indexes to court records. If a conviction was a domestic violence case, these records and indexes will still show the case type.

Information about the court records from the cases that led to the convictions are still public. You can still find them on www.courts.wa.gov

Prosecutors can still use evidence of vacated convictions in a later criminal prosecution. They can still use them in a sexually violent predator commitment proceeding.

FBI records and private background check records may still have information about the convictions.