Under Penal Code section 1203.4, persons can move to withdraw a guilty or no contest plea and vacate the conviction, or vacate a prior conviction after trial, upon a showing that the movant has either completed probation successfully or been discharged from probation early and is not at the time of the motion charged with a new offense, serving a sentence or on probation in any other case. The court has discretion to grant the relief provided by section 1203.4 in the interests of justice even if the movant cannot make this showing, provided the statute does not bar relief for the particular offense.
Section 1203.4 relief is not available for certain sex offenses and Vehicle Code violations including DUI. However, a court has discretion to grant the relief provided by the statute for a DUI and other Vehicle Code violations if it finds it is in the interests of justice to do so.
Note that the relief provided by section 1203.4, though often termed “expungement,” does not actually result in removal of the conviction from the record. Rather, the person’s criminal record will reflect that the conviction has been dismissed pursuant to section 1203.4. It is essentially a court finding of rehabilitation.
Section 1203.4 relief does not prevent the conviction from being considered a conviction under federal immigration laws, nor does it prevent the conviction from being used as a prior in subsequent prosecutions or restore one’s right to own or possess firearms.