New Jersey Judiciary Expunges More than 360,000 Marijuana Offenses

The New Jersey Judiciary has expunged more than 362,000 marijuana and hashish cases from court records since the Marijuana Decriminalization Law became effective July 1.

Eligible cases are expunged automatically by the Judiciary. Once a case is expunged, it is removed from the court’s public record and does not have to be reported on applications for jobs, housing, or college admissions.

More than 1,200 individuals have been released from probation after their cases were expunged.

Members of the public, or their attorney, can go to the court where their case was heard or to the Superior Court Clerk’s Office in Trenton to receive a certification stating their case has been expunged. The Judiciary has issued more than 2,800 certifications to date.

Cases with offenses eligible for expungement include certain marijuana or hashish charges alone or in combination with the following: possession of drug paraphernalia; use or being under the influence of a controlled, dangerous substance; and failure to make lawful disposition of a controlled, dangerous substance.

Cases involving charges that are not eligible under the new law will not be expunged. Those who feel their case should have been considered for expungement under the new law can file a motion for judicial review.

The Administrative Office of the Courts will launch an awareness campaign on Sept. 20 to inform the public of the opportunities available through the Marijuana Decriminalization Law.

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