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Obtaining a Copy of Your Criminal Record in Orange County, California

The process of cleaning up your criminal record starts with knowing the particulars of your conviction. To get any relief, be it expungement, a pardon or certificate of rehabilitation, you will be required to fill out some forms. Knowing what is on your criminal record will guide you in figuring your options and will also help you to know the correct application forms to use.

Different sources for your criminal record

There are several sources from which you can get your criminal record. They include:

  1. The court papers you received when you were convicted
  2. Officials who have handled your case, including: your lawyer, your parole or probation officer and other officials within the court system
  3. The court where you were convicted. In this case for you, Orange County court. If you live in Orange County but was convicted in another county, you will have to get your records from the superior court that convicted you. Make copies of all the relevant documents.
  4. California State Department of justice. The California criminal record review unit is responsible for handling all criminal records on behalf of California State DOJ.
How to get your criminal record from California Department of Justice

Though a bit complicated as compared to the other 3 sources, there are times when obtaining your record from California DOJ is your only option, such as when you want to check your criminal record for accuracy. You can access your records from the DOJ no matter what county you live in.

When dealing directly with the DOJ, you have to follow very specific instructions. You’ll incur a fee but the fee can be waived under certain circumstances.

To request your record from California DOJ, you need to submit your fingerprints along with your application for your criminal history.

If you live outside California or overseas

Use form FD258, the manual form for fingerprints. You can contact the criminal record review unit for a fingerprint card.

If you are currently residing in California:

You’ll need to submit your fingerprints using form BCIA 8016RR, which is the form for requesting a Live Scan – the only approved .

To fill in the form:

  • Select ‘record review’ where it shows ‘type of application (check one only)’
  • Write ‘record review’ as the reason for application.
  • Provide all other personal information. Do not leave any blanks, otherwise your form will be tossed aside for incompleteness.
  • Once completed, refer to the list of Live Scan locations provided by orange county courts and submit your forms to a Live Scan location closest to you. You’ll need to pay a fee of $25 dollars for processing.
  • You will receive your record at least 8 to 10 weeks from the date of submission.

Note: Make 2 copies of the Live Scan application form: One for you, one for the Live Scan service, and the original to be sent to the California state DOJ.

Once you receive your fingerprints (manual or live), complete the request for your criminal record by using Form BCIA 8705. If you are using manual finger print card, enclose a check addressed to the California DOJ, to cover the fee of $25.

Mail all items directly to the Record Review Unit of the California DOJ. Their full mailing address is available on the Orange County Courts website.

If after receiving your record, you find that some of the contents included are not correct, fill out form BCIA 8706, which is used to contest inaccuracy. After the record is corrected, you can apply for expungement or for any other post-conviction relief.

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