Record Expunging & Sealing
If you’ve been arrested and/or you have a criminal record, anyone can easily learn all about your criminal case, including potential employers, apartment building managers, financial institutions (banks), even family members and neighbors. Clearly, it is in your best interest to expunge or seal your criminal record as soon as possible to avoid any unnecessary problems or embarrassment. Even if you received a withhold of adjudication and were not convicted, your criminal record may still cause you problems. If you qualify, sealing or expunging your criminal arrest (police and court) records is a low-cost way to improve your life.
We specialize in sealing or expunging criminal records so that they do not appear on criminal background checks. Cleaning and clearing your record by sealing or expunging can protect your future. Once your record is sealed or expunged, you can legally deny having ever been arrested or charged!
Why Should I Expunge/Seal My Record?
A court-granted expunction or sealing will eliminate the public record of your withhold of adjudication or dismissal of your criminal charge. Leaving a public record can haunt you when you seek jobs or loans, or even have nosy neighbors. Once your record is sealed or expunged, you can legally deny having ever been arrested or charged!
Am I Eligible To Expunge/Seal My Record?
If you meet these basic requirements, you may be eligible for expunction:
– You have not previously had a record sealed or expunged
– You have never been convicted (adjudicated guilty) of a misdemeanor, criminal ordinance violation (including traffic criminal cases such as DUI, reckless driving, or driving while license suspended) or a felony
– You are not currently under court supervision (probation, community control, or any other court-mandated program)
– You received a “withhold of adjudication” for the offense, and it is not listed below as an ineligible crime
– Crimes you may not seal or expunge, regardless of whether you were found guilty, took a plea or even received a withhold of adjudication:
– Luring or Enticing a Child – F.S. 787.025
– Sexual Battery and related offense – Chapter 794
– Procuring person under 18 for prostitution – F.S. 796.03
– Lewd or lascivious offenses committed upon or in the presence of persons less than 16 years of age – F.S. 800.04
– Voyeurism F.S. 810.14
– Violations of the Florida Communications Fraud Act (Scheme to defraud or Organized Fraud as defined in F.S. 817.034)
– Lewd or lascivious offenses committed upon or in the presence of an elderly person or disabled adult – F.S. 825.1025
– Sexual Performance by a child – F.S. 827.071
– Sexual misconduct with mentally deficient or mentally ill defendant and related offenses. A violation of any offense qualifies for registration as a sexual predator under F.S. 775.21 or for registration as a sexual offender under F.S. 943.0435.
– Offenses by public officers and employees – Chapter 839
– Giving/showing/transmitting/loaning obscene materials to a minor – F.S. 847.0133
– Computer pornography(child related) – F.S. 847.0135
– Selling or buying of minors – F.S. 847.0145
– Drug Trafficking (Trafficking in Controlled Substances) – F.S. 893.135 (This does not include possession)
– Violations of Pretrial detention or release – F.S. 907.041
– Arson – F.S. 806.01
– Aggravated Assault – F.S. 784.021
– Aggravated Battery – F.S. 784.045
– Illegal use of explosives – F.S. 790.001
– Child abuse or aggravated child abuse- Chapter 827
– Abuse of elderly person or disabled adult, or aggravated abuse of an elderly person or disabled adult
– Aircraft Piracy
– Kidnapping – Chapter 787
– Homicide – Chapter 782
– Manslaughter – F.S. 782.07
– Robbery – F.S. 812.13
– Carjacking – F.S. 812.133
– Sexual activity with a child, who is 12 years of age or older, but less than 18 years of age, by or at solicitation of a person in familial or custodial authority – F.S. 827.071
– Burglary of a dwelling – F.S. 810.02
– Stalking and aggravated stalking – F.S. 784.048
– Act of Domestic Violence as defined in F.S. 741.28
– Home invasion robbery – F.S. 812.135
– Act of terrorism as defined by F.S. 775.30
– Attempting or conspiring to commit any of the above crimes
When Do I Have To Tell That I Expunge/Sealed My Record?
Almost never. Florida law permits a person who has sealed or expunged a record to lawfully deny or fail to acknowledge the sealed or expunged arrests, except in limited situations. This is the main reason for expunging a record. The records are removed from public access. You, your attorney, law enforcement agencies and public licensing agencies are the only people and organizations allowed access. Additionally, it is a misdemeanor for anyone who has access to your record to reveal that your record has been sealed or expunged.
However, Florida law requires that you divulge expunged or sealed criminal records when:
– You are a candidate for employment with a criminal justice agency;
– You are a defendant in a criminal prosecution;
– You are applying for another record sealing or expunction;
– You are a candidate for admission to the Florida Bar;
– You are seeking employment, licensing or contract with the Department of Children and Family Services, Department of Juvenile Justice, or employment with or to be used by a contractor or licensee in a sensitive position having direct contact with children, the developmentally disabled or the elderly;
– You are seeking employment with or licensing by the Office of Teacher Education, Certification, Staff Development, and Professional Practices of the Department of Education, any district school board, or any local governmental entity which licenses childcare facilities.
If you apply for licensing or employment by any of the entities mentioned above, your record is subject to disclosure and is not protected. It is, however, illegal for anyone to whom your record is disclosed to reveal information about your record to anyone except you or anyone having direct employment or licensing decisions.
What Sets Us Apart
Our firm focuses on providing well-grounded, innovative solutions to your legal problems or those of loved ones. We are known not only for the high quality of our legal work, but also for the personal service we provide.