Delaware Made It Too Hard to Expunge Juvenile Records. We're Fixing That.

Lisa Minutola and Riya Saha Shah, Delaware Online •

In February 2016, Juvenile Law Center released a report ranking each state on its protection of juvenile records and the ease and effectiveness of expungement laws. Delaware was nearly last in the nation, scoring in the bottom 10 percent of all states.

Since Juvenile Law Center’s report, the Office of Defense Services (ODS) and a group of bipartisan lawmakers, as well as various stakeholders and other state agencies, have worked to reform Delaware’s complex juvenile expungement statute. In 2016, the legislature passed Senate Bill 198, which streamlined the process for youth to gain a mandatory expungement from Family Court and allowed some expungements to occur during the same court proceeding in which charges were terminated in the child’s favor.

Issues
About the Expert