Hello I have been lurking for a while now and am very impressed with the available information. I find this community to be an important tool, and very beneficial for all the pre meds out there. I have noticed several posts regarding questions surrounding past convictions and students that have a less than stellar upbringing. All these posts made me start to acknowledge my own minor brush ins with the law >8 years ago while I was a young teenager. While many have offered there munificent advice, which I mind you to definitely only believe a small fraction of what you hear. (Majority are just opinions with no supporting evidence, or past experience resulting these matters). I have decided to use my first post to help clear up any questions regarding criminal background checks. I came across this link by AAMC that will give you the exact information regarding criminal background checks. http://www.aamc.org/members/gsa/cbc_final_report.pdf . Keep in mind some schools require you to submit more information than others. (Mostly on the secondary). You will have to research these schools your self. Some will say exclude juvenile and expunged offenses, some will want them included. Read the fine print and understand what they are asking. Be very circumspect while filling out applications. Dishonesty is greatly frowned upon and will BREAK you. Every case is evaluated on a case by case basis after an acceptance to the school. If you have had a record expunged it may still be seen by the investigating company. Usually it is sealed in public records, however private companies may have had these records prior to the expunction and are not obligated to seal them. In this case they will be revealed and only because they were not sealed at that level (they were most likely unaware of the sealed record). In this case you will want to make sure that after an record is sealed or expunged the proper steps have been taken by your lawyer to notify these other companies including the federal level with the supporting documentation to seal these records. You probably know by now that by law you can legally answer no on the conviction portion of your application if you have had an expunged, sealed, juvenile, or dismissed record. The reason you have this barrier has to do with your rights and currently admissions to educational programs should not be discriminated upon. While gaining admissions to college your state laws are respected because you are seeking education. If private companies see your sealed record they cannot report it or you have lawsuit on your hands, thats why it is not reportable at this phase (schools should not have access to this). Private companies will email you with their findings and give you ten days to object. At this point if they did find expunged or sealed records you should have the legal papers on hand to show them that the record is sealed and they should honor the state law and make adjustments prior to submitting to schools. Hospitals may also require an additional check prior to clinical rotations (mainly for liability reasons). Keep in mind that when you complete medical school the Medical Boards are allowed access to sealed and expunged records, and will evaluate every offense that you have previously had (usually finger printed). Now by law you can no longer avoid the fact that you have a record. You must now disclose you prior convictions with the exception of juvenile records. Minor misdemeanors in most cases will pose no threat to your license. Every thing is taken case by case. Common sense will tell you if you are going to run into a problem or not. Every thing that you have ever been finger printed for should show up + some other cases that you have not been finger printed for. You need to be very honest and hope for the board to recognize mitigating factors. Some mitigating factors include severity of offense, how many offenses, time since offense, and was this an isolated case. If you were young and made an isolated mistake this would be a huge mitigating factor. My advice to you is if your dream is to become a doctor you will become a doctor. If you have had trouble in the past you can over come it by proving that it is no longer an issue. Some people have bigger hurdles to over come than others but in the end the ones that succeed are the ones that did not quit. Dont be depressed by your tarnished past, just show every one how much more determined you are, and prove that your past is no longer an issue. You can over come every hurdle you come across if you dont give up on your dream. Just remember that Medical Board Members are human as well and some have been in the same shoes that you have been in, however most of them did not require a check when they were applying. Excel in every thing you do from this point and when you apply to medical schools, and boards you accomplishments will out shadow you little foolish mistakes. Always consult a lawyer for legal matters. Good luck and god bless you all on your journey!