State Law Summary



The following is a summary of the law prepared by law students under the supervision of a professor based on consulting multiple sources. It is only up to date as of the dates shown below and in many cases we had to make judgment calls. Therefore we encourage you to also consult the sources below, as well as the Restoration of Rights Project that include summaries of the law for all 50 states and US territories.

Primary Sources: List of crimes eligible for expungement under MD law (Rev. 10/2019)

Secondary Sources: MD CCRC (7/13/2020) | Shielding Statute (2020) | Expungement Information, MD Public Defender Office (Feb 2019)|

Summary of the Law

  1. Misdemeanors:
    1. Shielding for enumerated (defined) offenses 3 years after completion of sentence if clean.
    2. Expungement for enumerated (defined) misdemeanors 10 years after completion of sentence if clean.
    3. Expungement for enumerated (defined) misdemeanors 15 years after completion of sentence if clean .
  2. Felonies: Expungement for enumerated felonies (defined) 15 years after completion of sentence if clean.
  3. Not eligible: Individuals with pending criminal charges.
  4. Lifetime or other Limits:One shielding petition per lifetime.
  5. Treatment of multiple convictions from the same Incident: “Unit Rule”, all charges in the case or any related incident/cases must be eligible for expungement in order for the whole case to be eligible for expungement.
  6. LFO payment required for sentence completion:n/a
  7. Other Unmodeled Criteria or details:
    1. Victims of Human Trafficking
    2. Pardons given for marijuana convictions and other decriminalized conduct
    3. Non-violent first offenders who have been granted a full and unconditional pardon. Md. Code Ann., Crim. Proc. § 10-105(a)(8). Application must be filed no later than ten years after the pardon is granted. § 10-105(c)(4).
    4. Certain minor nuisance crimes (public urination, drinking in public, panhandling, loitering, vagrancy, etc.), three years after completion of sentence. § 10-105(a)(9), (c)(6).
    5. Charges transferred to juvenile court. § 10-105(a)(7); 10-106.
    6. Police records of arrests not leading to charges 60 days after release. § 10-103; 10-103.1.
    7. Conviction records for decriminalized offenses. § 10-105(a)(11).
    8. Conviction records for possession of marijuana after four years. § 10-105(a)(12).


  1. Expungement for deferred adjudication, acquittals, nolle prosequis, dismissed charges, and probation before judgment (“PBJ”) after a 3-year waiting-period if clean. With no pending charges


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