2018 Colorado Revised Statutes
Title 24 - Government - State
Public (Open) Records
Article 72 - Public Records
Part 7 - Criminal Justice Record Sealing
§ 24-72-703. Sealing criminal conviction records - advisements - discovery - order applicability - general provisions

  • (1) Advisements. (a) Whenever a defendant is sentenced following a conviction for an offense described in sections 24-72-704 to 24-72-710, the court shall provide him or her with a written advisement of his or her rights concerning the sealing of his or her conviction records pursuant to this section if he or she complies with the applicable provisions of this section.

    • (b) In addition to, and not in lieu of, the requirement described in subsection (1)(a) of this section:

      • (I) If a defendant is sentenced to probation following a conviction for an offense described in sections 24-72-704 to 24-72-710, the probation department, upon the termination of the defendant's probation, shall provide the defendant with a written advisement of his or her rights concerning the sealing of his or her conviction records pursuant to this section if he or she complies with the applicable provisions of this section; or

      • (II) If a defendant is released on parole following a conviction for an offense described in sections 24-72-704 to 24-72-710, the defendant's parole officer, upon the termination of the defendant's parole, shall provide the defendant with a written advisement of his or her rights concerning the sealing of his or her conviction records pursuant to this section if he or she complies with the applicable provisions of this section.

  • (2) Rules of discovery - rules of evidence - witness testimony. Court orders sealing records of official actions pursuant to this part 7 do not limit the operations of:

    • (a) The rules of discovery or the rules of evidence promulgated by the supreme court of Colorado or any other state or federal court; or

    • (b) The provisions of section 13-90-101, C.R.S., concerning witness testimony.

  • (3) A person may only file a petition with the court for sealing of each case once every twelve-month period.

  • (4) Effect of a sealing order. (a) An order sealing conviction records does not deny access to the criminal records of a defendant by any court, law enforcement agency, criminal justice agency, prosecuting attorney, or party or agency required by law to conduct a criminal history record check on an individual. An order sealing conviction records is not construed to vacate a conviction. A conviction sealed pursuant to this section may be used by a criminal justice agency, law enforcement agency, court, or prosecuting attorney for any lawful purpose relating to the investigation or prosecution of any case, including but not limited to any subsequent case that is filed against the defendant, or for any other lawful purpose within the scope of his, her, or its duties. If a defendant is convicted of a new criminal offense after an order sealing conviction records is entered, the court shall order the conviction records to be unsealed. A party or agency required by law to conduct a criminal history record check is authorized to use any sealed conviction for the lawful purpose for which the criminal history record check is required by law.

    • (b) Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (a) of this subsection (4), upon the entry of an order to seal the conviction records, the defendant and all criminal justice agencies may properly reply, upon an inquiry in the matter, that public conviction records do not exist with respect to the defendant.

    • (c) Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (a) of this subsection (4), inspection of the records included in an order sealing conviction records may thereafter be permitted by the court only upon petition by the defendant.

    • (d)

      • (I) Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (a) of this subsection (4) or in subparagraphs (II) and (III) of this paragraph (d), employers, state and local government agencies, officials, landlords, and employees shall not, in any application or interview or in any other way, require an applicant to disclose any information contained in sealed conviction records. An applicant need not, in answer to any question concerning conviction records that have been sealed, include a reference to or information concerning the sealed conviction records and may state that the applicant has not been criminally convicted. An application may not be denied solely because of the applicant's refusal to disclose conviction records that have been sealed.

      • (II) Subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (d) does not preclude the bar committee of the Colorado state board of law examiners from making further inquiries into the fact of a conviction that comes to the attention of the bar committee through other means. The bar committee of the Colorado state board of law examiners has a right to inquire into the moral and ethical qualifications of an applicant, and the applicant has no right to privacy or privilege that justifies his or her refusal to answer a question concerning sealed conviction records that have come to the attention of the bar committee through other means.

      • (III) The provisions of subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (d) shall not apply to a criminal justice agency or to an applicant to a criminal justice agency.

      • (IV) Any member of the public may petition the court to unseal any file that has been previously sealed upon a showing that circumstances have come into existence since the original sealing and, as a result, the public interest in disclosure now outweighs the defendant's interest in privacy.

  • (5) The office of the state court administrator shall post on its website a list of all petitions to seal conviction records that are filed with a district court. A district court may not grant a petition to seal conviction records until at least thirty days after the posting. After the expiration of thirty days following the posting, the petition to seal conviction records and information pertinent thereto must be removed from the website of the office of the state court administrator.

  • (6) Nothing in this section shall be construed to authorize the physical destruction of any conviction records.

  • (7) Notwithstanding any provision in this part 7 to the contrary, in regard to any conviction of a defendant resulting from a single case in which the defendant is convicted of more than one offense, records of the conviction may be sealed pursuant to the provisions of this part 7 only if the records of every conviction of the defendant resulting from that case may be sealed pursuant to the provisions of this part 7.

  • (8) Conviction records may not be sealed if the defendant still owes restitution, fines, court costs, late fees, or other fees ordered by the court in the case that is the subject of the petition to seal conviction records, unless the court that entered the order for restitution, fines, court costs, late fees, or other fees has vacated the order.

  • (9) A petition to seal conviction records pursuant to this section shall include a listing of each custodian of the records to whom the sealing order is directed and any information that accurately and completely identifies the records to be sealed. A verified copy of the defendant's criminal history, current through at least the twentieth day before the date of the filing of the petition, must be submitted to the court by the defendant along with the petition at the time of filing, but in no event later than the tenth day after the petition is filed. The defendant shall be responsible for obtaining and paying for his or her criminal history record.

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