Can a Criminal Record be cleared in Australia?

criminal conviction

A criminal record is when there is a finding of guilt or you plead guilty to an offence and the sentence imposed upon you records a criminal conviction.


However, a criminal record can be cleared on the basis of a crime free period. All Australian states and territories have laws restricting the disclosure of prior criminal records after a certain period of time in which no new crimes have been committed. This is called the “waiting period.” In NSW, the waiting period is usually ten years.


The crime-free period for children’s court matters is 3 years. If there are no control orders in place within that 3-year period, the order will be’spent’. The person must also not have been convicted of an offence which would carry an imprisonment penalty, or have been in prison due to a conviction for any other crime.

Does your Criminal Record clear after 10 years?

Criminal convictions can all be spent. This means that if you have a conviction for a previously committed crime, you won’t be required to tell anyone about it if they ask. This is called the spent conviction scheme in Australia.


For example, in New South Wales, a criminal record lasts for up to 10-years for most criminal offences provided you complete the crime-free behaviour period and be of good behaviour.

How do I Clear my Criminal Record in Australia?

The convictions become spent, once the crime free period has occurred. This is covered under spent convictions legislation.


However, there are exceptions to getting a spent criminal record. These exceptions are:


  • You cannot be convicted of another offence during the good behaviour term. In addition, If you are convicted again, the time will begin all over again.
  • If you receive a full time jail sentence, the period of good behaviour will start when the full sentence is completed.
  • Offences that resulted in a penalty being imposed of over 30 months can never become spent.
  • Sexual offences.
  • Offences against corporate bodies.
  • Serious offences against a child or vulnerable person.

Furthermore, convictions for traffic and drink driving offences are spent the same as convictions for non-traffic offences. However, the following exceptions apply;


  • Speeding offences well above 45km/h;
  • Serious Drink Driving Offences
  • Other Serious Traffic infringements,
  • Serious DUI offences,
  • Attacking a Traffic or Police officer to prevent arrest, causing them serious bodily injuries,
  • Aggravated Driving offences,
  • Traffic offences the court stipulates during sentencing cannot become Spent.

Can a Criminal Record be cleared in NSW?

Pursuant to section 8 of the Criminal Records Act 1991 NSW (CRA), a conviction can be removed after the appropriate crime-free period expires for most criminal offences in New South Wales.

How Can I Look Up My Criminal Record?

You may require a police criminal record check online for employment, students placements, working with children, and visas. There are numerous agencies that you can use to check your criminal record online. For example, you can use the National Police Check or Services NSW.


There is usually a fee for a national police check. In addition, if required, a cost of $99 applies for a fingerprint and national police check application.

Get Legal Advice Now

Consult with our team of criminal lawyers before going to court for the best expert advice on how to proceed, what the likely outcome will be, and any preparation you need to do beforehand. You will also receive a fixed fee quote on the cost for representation on the day, this includes all traffic offences. Our experienced criminal lawyers deal with various criminal law and legal matters in the high courts of New South Wales.

If the police have charged you or a loved one, you must attend court. Appearing in court for a criminal charge is usually daunting. Let us help you make the process easier. Here are 10 reasons to choose our team of criminal lawyers from Lyons Law Group;


Result-focused criminal lawyers 


Our team will work to achieve the best result for you in the shortest time possible. However, we do aim to provide quality over quantity service to you. Our criminal lawyers appear in all criminal and traffic matters, including trials, sentencing, bail applications, and apprehended violence orders. We are a result-focused firm of lawyers.

At Lyons Law, we do not make any unrealistic promises for results. You will be advised on the most realistic results achievable in your case, including acquittals of all charges against you. Nevertheless, you can be sure that our team will work extremely hard to achieve the best possible outcome for you.


Proven Track Record


Our experienced defence lawyers are passionate about representing their clients and achieving the best outcome. Lyons Law is a team of solicitors who are dedicated, and with our support staff, you can be confident of the highest quality of legal representation. We have an exceptional track record of results. We provide our outstanding client service at an affordable rate for our clients.


Fixed Fees


We always let our clients know how much their cases will cost from the beginning. This makes it easier for them to decide whether or not they want to proceed with the case. Not only do we offer fixed fees for many types of criminal cases and services, but also free first phone consultations. In addition, our firm offers fixed fees applicable to a wide range of Local Court cases such as drink driving, fraud, drug possession, assault, and AVOs.


Free First Conference


For all of those individuals who are going to court, we offer a free first 15-minute phone conference with one of our senior criminal defence lawyer. It is best you email our office all your relevant documents before a conference so criminal lawyers can provide the best advice within that time frame.


Highly experienced criminal defence lawyer


Lyons Law Group is a highly experienced team of criminal lawyers. Our team is led by Mohammad Khan, who is one of the best criminal lawyers in Sydney. He has represented clients in some of Australia’s most high-profile cases and was under the direct tutelage of Australia’s leading criminal lawyer Adam Houda.


Moreover, our team has worked and successfully represented clients on highly complex trials and sentences in NSW.


Work closely with Australia’s leading criminal law barrister


We work closely with some of Australia’s leading criminal law barristers. Barristers are usually instructed in more serious matters, and their experience and input can be invaluable to your case. The barristers we regularly instruct range from Queen’s counsels, Senior counsels and highly experienced junior-senior counsels.


Specialist for District and Supreme Court trials


Our team of sydney criminal lawyers have worked on numerous District and Supreme Court trials in NSW. We have worked on extremely complex criminal law trials that require impeccable preparation and understanding of the law.


Specialist for bail applications in NSW


Lyons Law Group is a highly experienced team of bail lawyers. We have regularly obtained bail for clients for extremely serious charges that carry life sentences. For types of charges, bail is usually denied by a Court.


In house Experts


Our criminal lawyers have in-house investigators with decades of law enforcement experience and assist our team with process service, background checks, integrity testing, investigations, surveillance, and bug detection.


For the preparation of jury trials and defended hearings, these services can be utilised on behalf of our client to achieve the best result.


Appearance at all Courts in NSW


From Broken Hill to Waverly, our criminal lawyers appear in all courts throughout New South Wales.


If you wish to contact us or book your first free 15-minute phone conference, contact us on 0404479096 or send us an email at info@lyonslaw.com.au.

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    Russell Lew
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    Super knowledgeable amazing service extremely supportive thank you so much.
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    A BIG thank you to Lyons Law Group with helping me achieve the best outcome for my case. From day one they were very professional, straight to the point and very easy to communicate with, keeping me updated and informed with everything I needed to know. Honestly, exceptional service and support. Thank you once again to Mohammad & Team.
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    Lyons Law Group is amazing. They are very professional, sympathetic, and helpful. I was kept informed during every step. The level of support was second to none. Mohammad went above and beyond and updated me regularly. Hijram too was amazing. Her calls and court representation made me feel at ease. This was a great experience. I cannot recommend Lyons Law Group enough. My gratitude extends to all involved in the handling of my case.
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    Thank you Lyons Law Group on providing me an exceptional service delivered with care, compassion and a high level of professionalism. The outcome was more than what I had expected. A true reflection of your legal expertise and experience. Thank you Mohammad and team.
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    10/10 WOULD RECOMMEND!!! Last year I was caught up in some trouble and in need of desperate help my friend recommended William from Lyons Law Group. Although there was less than 3 weeks to prepare, William was happy to help me out despite there being such limited time to work with. Despite the limited time William had to work with, he made me feel confident during the whole time and also taught me a lot in the process. In the end he got me an outcome that was better than I thought I would have gotten! I will definitely go back to William if I ever need legal help again!
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    Very professional, reasonable pricing and very supportive. The most stressful time of my life Mohammed was honest and driven to get the best possible outcome for me. Thank you Lyons team
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    Helped me get the best possible outcome for my personal scenario. Their patience and professionalism are outstanding, I was given pure human understanding. Thank you
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    Lyons Law was professional and provided exceptional service to get the best result. I would recommend engaging them. Particular mention and thanks to the solicitor William Lam.
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    Great teamwork, great people. Highly recommended. Thank you Lyons Law Group