Arizona Set Aside Law

When someone is convicted of a crime in Arizona, they lose a number of rights and privileges that people without records enjoy.  When a person has a conviction set aside, the court orders that person to be released from most “penalties and disabilities resulting from the conviction.”

While setting aside a record does not seal or expunge a criminal record, set-aside changes the status of a record from a “conviction” to a “dismissal.”  

Set asides are governed by Arizona Rev. Stat. Section 13-905, which can be found here:

In determining whether to grant a set-aside, the court generally considers the following factors:


  • The nature and circumstances of the offense; 
  • The person’s age at the time of the offense; 
  • How long it has been since the completion of a person’s sentence; 
  • Probation history and compliance 
  • Any objections or input (if any) from the victim
  • Whether the person has any prior or subsequent criminal convictions 
  • Any other factors the court finds relevant to the determination


In addition, a person must complete their sentence and probation term before they are eligible to seek a set-aside of their conviction record. 

Certain types of cases are not eligible for set-aside.  Those include offenses involving serious physical injury, dangerous instruments, or deadly weapons, certain sex-related offenses, and conduct involving a victim who is less than 15 years old.  For a complete list of exclusions or other information about set aside, click here [13-905A]. 

A record that has been set aside does still appear on a background check, and someone with a set-aside record still needs to check the box to disclose a criminal record if asked on job and housing applications.  However, set-aside convictions can make it easier

In order for criminal records to not appear on background checks in Arizona, the records must be expunged or sealed. 

If your ecord is expunged or sealed, you do not also need to get a set-aside. 


The easiest way to find what is on your record, and whether it can be set-aside, is to use Rasa’s eligibility tool. Rasa’s eligibility tool is easy to use and it takes less than 3 minutes to ge your results.  Rasa’s eligibility tool uses advanced technology to scan Arizona court databases to identify what is on your record. It then processes the information and compares it to Arizona law to determine what legal options are available to help you alleviate the consequences of your criminal record.

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