Is an Expunged Record a Barrier to TSA PreCheck?


If you’ve ever been arrested or convicted of a crime, you know how hard it can be to move on with your life. Even if the charges were expunged, that doesn’t mean they won’t show up in background checks or other investigations. So if you’re hoping to get TSA PreCheck, do expunged records come up during the application process? Let’s examine an expungement and how it affects your TSA PreCheck eligibility.

What Does Expungement Mean?
An expungement is when a legal record of an arrest or conviction is sealed from public view. This means the criminal record won’t appear in most background checks or court searches. However, it does not mean the record has been erased—it merely means it is hidden from public view. This has obvious benefits for people who have been arrested or convicted and are trying to move on with their lives without the stigma of their past haunting them.

Does Expungement Affect TSA PreCheck Eligibility?
The short answer is yes—but not necessarily in the way you might think. Expunged records will still appear on your background check when applying for TSA PreCheck; they will not necessarily disqualify you from being accepted into the program. Certain crimes can make you ineligible for TSA PreCheck even if they were expunged. These include felonies involving violence, drug-related felonies, and espionage-related crimes.

It’s important to remember that while an expungement may benefit you in many ways, it does not entirely erase your record—it only seals it from public view so that people conducting casual searches won’t find it. Regarding more rigorous background checks, such as those conducted for TSA PreCheck applications, expunged records will still appear on your record. In addition, they may affect your eligibility depending on the type of crime committed and whether or not it was violent.


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