A certificate of rehabilitation is a court order declaring that a person has been "rehabilitated." It does not erase the record of your conviction and you must still reveal your conviction on job applications. However, some laws make it impossible for you to obtain a particular job or license if you have a criminal conviction. A certificate of rehabilitation will remove these "statutory bars."
If a certificate issues, it is deemed a recommendation that the Governor grant a pardon. A person twice convicted of felonies must also have the recommendation of the California Supreme Court.
To be eligible for a certificate of rehabilitation, you must not have been re-incarcerated for any reason since your release on probation or parole, you must satisfy certain California residency requirements, and you must satisfy an additional "period of rehabilitation" or waiting period. A certificate of rehabilitation is available for most felony convictions and for some misdemeanor sex offenses specified in Penal Code section 290, provided that certain conditions are met.
A certificate of rehabilitation must be filed with the court in the county where you reside.
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Last Updated: 10/2014