New criminal record expungement law could benefit SC job seekers

Grand Strand

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – A state law officially in effect at the start of the year could make it easier for some people to find jobs in South Carolina.

Greg McCollum of Complete Legal Defense Team has worked with expungement cases for about 20 years.

“We’ve seen a little bit of an uptick because of this new law, where people have heard about it and have contacted us to see if they’re eligible,” McCollum said.

He says a new state law allowing for more criminal records to be expunged can help the job prospects for those who have stayed out of trouble for nearly their entire lives.

“Where we see it is with people who are really advancing their careers who have really worked hard either through their efforts or training and education, but they’ve hit a wall because of something they did in their teens and 20s,” said McCollum.

Under the law, some first-time or juvenile offenses can be erased from a criminal record. Certain drug felony convictions can also be removed for someone who hasn’t been charged with another felony in at least 20 years.

McCollum says this benefits people who may not have even been convicted, as more businesses expand their types of background checks.

“Maybe they got arrested and a lot of these private companies will show that as a conviction,” McCollum said. “That’s something that can be corrected.”

McCollum also says the law will help people who have not made the same mistake twice.

“That gives them an opportunity to get something like that stain off of their record,” he said.

Gov. Henry McMaster vetoed the bill back in May, but both the state house and senate overwhelmingly overrode the veto in June.

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