Marijuana is set to become legal in the state of Illinois in January 2020, making hundreds of thousands of people eligible for expungement of marijuana-related offenses from their records. The State's Attorney for Cook County said that government agencies will partner with the organization Code for America to expedite the process of expungement. In Cook County, tens of thousands of conviction records will be automatically sealed with the help of a technology called Clear My Record. Marijuana convictions can damage a person's chance to find a job or get a home.
Under the terms of the new marijuana law, felony convictions related to less than 30 grams of marijuana will be expunged. Prosecutors will also have more time to focus on more serious criminal activity as they will not have to deal with so many marijuana cases. People who have convictions involving between 30 and 500 grams of marijuana will have to file petitions for expungement. Prosecutors will have the opportunity to object to these latter expungements, so they're not guaranteed.