If your record cannot be expunged or sealed, or is not yet eligible to be expunged or sealed, there are still other forms of relief that may help you to get a job.
Two of these forms of relief are:
• Certificate of Good Conduct; and
• Certificate of Relief From Disabilities.
A Certificate of Good Conduct helps you to get a job that you would not be able to get because of a law blocking you from that job. Some examples include the Illinois School Code, the Park District Code, and the Metropolitan Transit Act.
A Certificate of Relief from Disabilities can help you get a license that you need for certain types of jobs. Licenses are required, for example, to be: a shorthand reporter, a professional boxer, an athletic trainer, a marriage and family therapist, a barber, a nail technician, a cosmetologist, a funeral director, and many more.
You are eligible to apply for these forms of relief, unless you have been convicted of one of the following offenses:
• Arson or aggravated arson,
• Kidnapping or aggravated kidnapping,
• Aggravated Driving Under the Influence (DUI),
• Aggravated Domestic Battery, or
• Any offense or attempted offense that would subject you to register under the Sex Offender Registration Act, the Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Registration Act, or the Arsonists Registration Act.
You may file a Request for a Certificate of Good Conduct two years from the end of any sentence for a felony offense, or one year for a misdemeanor.
You may file a Request for a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities anytime after the sentence is pronounced.
The end of the sentence is the date you completed probation, got a conditional discharge, or were released from parole.
The Office of the State Appellate Defender is partnering with the Access to Justice Commission to prepare and distribute legally correct and user-friendly forms for Certificate of Good Conduct that will be accepted in every courthouse throughout Illinois.
Access to Justice is an initiative announced in 2012 by the Illinois Supreme Court to improve access to the justice system. The Court formed the Illinois Supreme Court Access to Justice Commission and charged the Commission with promoting, facilitating and enhancing equal access to justice with an emphasis on access to the Illinois civil courts and administrative agencies for all people, particularly the poor and vulnerable.
Certificate of Good Conduct Information and Forms
The following forms have been approved for use by the Supreme Court Commission on Access to Justice and are required to be accepted in all Illinois courts. The forms are ADA accessible, and you can handwrite or type into the PDF form.
You will need Adobe Acrobat or free Adobe Reader XI or higher in order to save completed forms.
Getting Started Request for Certificate of Good Conduct
How to ask for a Certificate of Good Conduct
Request for Certificate of Good Conduct
Notice of Court Date for Request for Certificate of Good Conduct
Certificate of Good Conduct (Order Granting Request)
Order Denying Request for Certificate of Good Conduct
Letter to Employer
For the forms in Spanish, click this link to the ILSC website.
In addition to the above, Illinois Legal Aid Online provides additional information related to this topic. The site can also refer you to an attorney for help in filling out these forms, including what else you may wish to include, and how to prepare for court. It is free to use.
Full text of Certificate of Good Conduct statute: 730 ILCS 5/5-5.5-25
Full text of Certificate of Relief From Disabilities statute: 730 ILCS 5/5-5.5-15
Forms and information on Certificate of Relief From Disabilities is coming soon.