Petitioning the court for sealing or destruction of juvenile records requires a thorough search to determine qualifying status. To begin the process, please call Juvenile Court at 360-778-5490 or email JuvenileCourt@co.whatcom.wa.us and request a packet of information regarding sealing records. Complete the form and return to Juvenile Court. We will begin the process and notify you of your qualifying status and the next steps you can take.
***If you need to request copies of documents in your juvenile court case, email the Superior Court Clerks office: firstname.lastname@example.org . You can find out more information regarding accessing documents in your file here: https://whatcomcounty.us/1944/Superior-Court-Clerk . Click on the option for "Access Your Case." Please note that while there are instructions to search for a document list for your case, juvenile court case document lists are NOT available online.
The court shall not grant any motion to seal records made pursuant to subsection (11) of this section that is filed on or after July 1, 1997, unless it finds that:
The person making a motion pursuant to subsection (11) of this section shall give reasonable notice of the motion to the prosecution and to any person or agency whose files are sought to be sealed.
If the court grants the motion to seal made pursuant to subsection (11) of this section, it shall, subject to subsection (23) of this section, order sealed the official juvenile court file, the social file, and other records relating to the case as are named in the order. Thereafter, the proceedings in the case shall be treated as if they never occurred, and the subject of the records may reply accordingly to any inquiry about the events, records of which are sealed.
Any agency shall reply to any inquiry concerning confidential or sealed records that records are confidential, and no information can be given about the existence or nonexistence of records concerning an individual.
Inspection of the files and records included in the order to seal may thereafter be permitted only by order of the court upon motion made by the person who is the subject of the information or complaint, except as otherwise provided in RCW 13.50.010 (8) and subsection (23) of this section.
Any adjudication of a juvenile offense or a crime subsequent to sealing has the effect of nullifying the sealing order. Any charging of an adult felony subsequent to the sealing has the effect of nullifying the sealing order for the purposes of chapter 9.94A RCW. The administrative office of the courts shall ensure that the superior court judicial information system provides prosecutors access to information on the existence of sealed juvenile records.