People Change.

Records Can Too.

Luzerne County Pardon Project logo

A pardon is total forgiveness by the state and it requires the court, prosecutors, and state police to erase your record like it never happened.

You will never have to “check the box” again!

The Pardon Project of Luzerne County

A pardon is a powerful tool for people who deserve a second chance. In Pennsylvania, the pardon process is free and more accessible than ever before. The Pardon Project of Luzerne County was created to help members of our community who were once convicted of a non-violent crime, completed their sentence, and turned their lives around – and only their past is holding them back from pursuing their potential.

If you’re someone who has a criminal record and is considering seeking a pardon, there are several benefits to doing so. Firstly, a pardon can help remove the stigma and barriers that come with having a criminal record, making it easier to find employment, housing, and education opportunities. Additionally, a pardon can provide a sense of closure and allow you to move on from your past mistakes, freeing you to pursue personal and professional growth. The potential benefits of a pardon are significant and can create a range of opportunities that may not have been available otherwise. We want to help you realize this opportunity!

If you have ever pled guilty or been convicted of a non-violent state crime in Pennsylvania and completed your sentence at least five years ago, you should consider applying for a pardon.

Records Can Too.

The Pardon Project of Luzerne County

A pardon is a powerful tool for people who deserve a second chance. In Pennsylvania, the pardon process is free and more accessible than ever before. The Pardon Project of Luzerne County was created to help members of our community who were once convicted of a non-violent crime, completed their sentence, and turned their lives around – and only their past is holding them back from pursuing their potential.

If you’re someone who has a criminal record and is considering seeking a pardon, there are several benefits to doing so. Firstly, a pardon can help remove the stigma and barriers that come with having a criminal record, making it easier to find employment, housing, and education opportunities. Additionally, a pardon can provide a sense of closure and allow you to move on from your past mistakes, freeing you to pursue personal and professional growth. The potential benefits of a pardon are significant and can create a range of opportunities that may not have been available otherwise. We want to help you realize this opportunity!

If you have ever pled guilty or been convicted of a non-violent state crime in Pennsylvania and completed your sentence at least five years ago, you should consider applying for a pardon.
Luzerne County Pardon Project logo

A pardon is total forgiveness by the state and it requires the court, prosecutors, and state police to erase your record like it never happened.

You will never have to “check the box” again!

News Alert

The next set of Pardon Public Hearings (until October 8-10) will be JUNE 12-14, with sessions at 9 AM and 1 PM (30 cases per session). Each ends with a public vote (3 YES votes required to get to the Governor). The next Merit Review (2 YES votes required to get a Public Hearing) will be on JULY 1 at 9 AM. These are public. To watch, click here.

Two –

Thirds

of those who apply for a pardon in Pennsylvania actually get one!

Did You Know?

Pennsylvania is leading the nation in pardon reform! The pardon process is entirely free, a lawyer is not necessary, and over 80% of the people going before the PA Board of Pardons actually end up with a pardon! Over a ten-year period, pardons brought over $16.5 million dollars in higher wages into communities all across the state. Luzerne County deserves its fair share!

Who We Are

Our Pardon Project Steering Committee came together in July of 2023 at the invitation of Steven Greenwald, Chief Public Defender of Luzerne County, and Elizabeth Leo, University Counsel at Wilkes University. Our board is a group of volunteers from all across Luzerne who are committed to second chances for the people of this county and the economic growth of our community. We are part of a large and growing statewide network of Pardon Projects.

Our Pardon Project does not have a central location yet. We operate on a hybrid model, offering intake and application services online. If you’re interested in our services, please complete the form below and we will be in touch.

Although our intake is online, we can sometimes be found attending tabling events across the county. To stay up to date on where we are visiting, check out our Facebook page.

What We Do

We train volunteers (“Pardon Coaches”) so that they know the process, and we connect them to clients whom we think have an excellent chance of receiving a pardon from the Governor.

Who We Serve

We provide Pardon Coaches for free to people who reside in Luzerne County (or were convicted here), but give priority to those who are within 238% of the federal poverty guidelines ($34,700/year for an individual, $71,400/year for a family of 4) and who have completed their sentences for non-violent crimes at least five years ago. The only cost that those over that income guideline are responsible for is the fee of getting their records, as the county clerk will only grant them for free if you are within that 238%.

Others may qualify on a case-by-case basis. And EVERYONE can help themselves! For our full Eligibility Criteria, click here.

How Do I Find Out if I Qualify?

Complete the form below with your information and someone from our team will be reply:

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About the Pardon Project

Philadelphia Lawyers for Social Equity (PLSE) has been helping low-income Philadelphians clean up their criminal records since 2011. In 2018, it started the Pardon Project to make the pardon process in Pennsylvania accessible to those without money to hire lawyers. In 2020, PLSE began helping communities outside Philadelphia form their own Pardon Projects. The Pennsylvania Association of Pardon Projects was formed the following year. Click here to read the article Pardon Projects: Communities Coming Together in Restorative Justice (PA Bar Association, Jan. 2022).
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Pennsylvania Association of Pardon Projects
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Philadelphia, PA 19102

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