Certain felonies are known as “wobblers,” which means they can be filed as either a misdemeanor or a felony under the law. Other felonies are known as “straight felonies, which means they can only be a felony. This is important because when applying for an expungement, your attorney must know when a charge is a wobbler, so that they can petition to reduce the offense to a misdemeanor pursuant to California Penal Code § 17(b), before the expungement.
If your attorney gets a wobbler charged as a felony expunged, without first getting it reduced, your right to get it reduced pursuant to 17(b) is waived. This could actually result in the individual losing their ability to get certain rights reinstated because you can’t go back and petition for a 17(b) reduction, after an expungement has been granted. This is why it’s important to get a professional attorney, with lots of experience in post-conviction work, and a proven track record of success in expungements.