Procedures For Vacating a Conviction

How Can I Vacate a Conviction?

You must apply at the court where you were convicted. To apply at Seattle Municipal Court, follow the instructions below:

  1. Review the following
  2. Complete the Motion and Declaration for Order Vacating Conviction.
    • Any missing information may cause delay. If you fail to disclose or state information about domestic violence, your request will be denied.
  3. Submit your completed form in person or by mail.

In Person:

Records Department
Seattle Municipal Court
600 Fifth Avenue, 3rd Floor
Seattle, WA 98104

Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

By Mail:

    Records Department
    Seattle Municipal Court
    600 Fifth Avenue
    PO Box 34987
    Seattle, WA 98124

    What Happens After I Submit My Application Form?

    • The court will request your criminal history from the Washington State Patrol and the FBI's National Crime Information Center.
    • A copy of your application form will be sent to the Seattle City Attorney's Office for review.
    • Your case file and other documentation will go to a judge for review. The judge may determine that you need to appear in court. If a hearing is required, you will receive a hearing notice by mail.
    • The court will contact you if additional information is required.
    • If your request is granted, you will receive a signed order indicating that your record has been vacated.
    • The court will notify the arresting agency and the Washington State Patrol. The Washington State Patrol will notify the Federal Bureau of Investigation to remove the conviction from your criminal history.

    If My Request to Vacate is Granted, What Do I Say When Asked About My Criminal History?

    Once you receive the signed order, you can then state that you have never been convicted of the offense for employment or housing purposes. However, if you are charged with another crime, the prosecutor may use this past conviction against you in the new case. If you are convicted of another crime, the cleared conviction cannot be used to determine your sentence. The Washington State Patrol will make every effort to process your cleared record as quickly as possible. We suggest that you contact the Washington State Patrol 90 days after you have received the signed order for a copy of your criminal history.