Skip Navigation



1. Posted by aimz1920 (Budding Member 7 posts) 4y

Hi everyone,

My friend has an old criminal record (over 15 years) from possesion and suspected supply of an illegal substance (very small amount)
I have read that records this old are considered 'dead' but I was wondering do we have to disclose this information when we travel to the USA this year?
Will he be allowed entry to the US because the record is so old?
Any help please...

2. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 4y

Your friend has basically 3 options with this and it depends on the 'substance'. Considering your thread title states Australia, I suspect the substance was marijuana.

The choices are: 1) check 'no' on the immigration form with regard to arrests, 2) admit to the criminal record and hope it is considered 'dead', or 3) call the Consulate office and ask.

I do not believe Australia and the US exchange criminal records, especially that old. (They may for more recent offenses.) I'd go with option #1 or #3. As many members have stated in several 'arrest record' threads, the US Immigration Dept. works on a whim. It all depends on the officer...

3. Posted by aimz1920 (Budding Member 7 posts) 4y

Thanks for your response.

You are correct on the substance.

I have since emailed the consulate and am awaiting a reply. My friend wants to say no on the forms as well, we were thinking this would be ok since the conviction is now 'spent'.
Does this mean he can travel on the visa waiver program? seeing as though he is going to tick no. We know he will be allowed into the US, he just doesn't want to be turned away for not completing the correct paperwork....

I have read so many other threads as well, and it just seems risky to lie. The only reason I ask is because it says we do not have to disclose the conviction because it is old, so I don't want that to be considered a lie? .... hence my confusion....

4. Posted by Kiwi_Dan (Budding Member 45 posts) 4y

Why dont he just ring the corrections in Australia and ask if its still on file. Ifs its old and not on file, then all good. After so many years it gets wipped for first offences. I think its a couple fo years.
I got done for smoking weed my first offence and after 2 years it was wipped from diversion.

[ Edit: Edited on 02-Apr-2012, at 20:53 by Kiwi_Dan ]

5. Posted by aimz1920 (Budding Member 7 posts) 4y

It's not on file, it's just that I have read that the us want to know about it no matter how old it is! Annoying....

6. Posted by Kiwi_Dan (Budding Member 45 posts) 4y

well if its not on record, how the hell are they going to know?. Just tick no and get on with it.

7. Posted by Kiwi_Dan (Budding Member 45 posts) 4y

Thats the main reason for first offence charges as "diversions" for small offences. It gets wipped after so long to give people another chance for reasons like this. Its just a warning really.
Its not acturally classed as a "CRIMINAL RECORD". A second offence is permanenty on file.
SO, he has been arrested before and had to pay a fine or watever, but has never acturally had a criminal record as you have 2 years to comply and not get in trouble again or he would get "charged" with the offence.

I have the same offense and never had any trouble with travel. Its past and not on file and doesnt exist. Its nothing. Gone.

[ Edit: Edited on 02-Apr-2012, at 21:10 by Kiwi_Dan ]

8. Posted by aimz1920 (Budding Member 7 posts) 4y

He was arrested and charged and it was recorded as a my understanding is it was a record

9. Posted by aimz1920 (Budding Member 7 posts) 4y

You got done for smoking weed. He got charged with possession and supply, I wish, but I don't think it would have been wiped after two years like yours