Criminal Record Expungement Lawyers In Florida

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In the state of Florida, some criminal records can be expunged or sealed under specific conditions. Generally, after your record is expunged or sealed, the public won’t be able to view it, but most government agencies will still be given access. 

However, if your Florida criminal record is expunged, not even the government can view your record without an order from the court.

Are There Different Types of Expungements in Florida? 

The short answer is yes. The types of expungements that are allowed by Florida law include:

  1. Administrative Expungement
  2. Court Ordered Expungement
  3. Human Trafficking Victim Expungement
  4. Juvenile Expungement
  5. Self-Defense Expungement

Our Florida criminal record expungement lawyers at Stevenson Klotz, can evaluate your individual circumstances, and advise you on whether you qualify for having your criminal record sealed or expunged, and the next steps that may be available to you.

What Are the Effects of Expungement in Florida?

Once your criminal record has been expunged, it’s unobtainable and unavailable by the general public, future employers, or other entities.

However, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement can disclose the existence of those files, but not the contents if you are looking for employment with the following:

  1. A Criminal Justice Agency
  2. The Department of Children and Family Services
  3. The Florida Bar Association
  4. The Department of Juvenile Justice
  5. A contractor who has a sensitive position in having direct contact with children
  6. The Department of Education
  7. Any Private or Public School
  8. Any local government agency that licenses childcare facilities

How Can I Seal or Expunge My Florida Criminal Record if I Wasn’t Convicted of a Crime? 

In Florida, if you were arrested for a crime but not convicted, your criminal record may qualify to be expunged or sealed. In order to qualify, you must not have had a criminal record expunged or sealed in the past, even in another state. Additionally, you can’t have a pending petition to have your past criminal record sealed or expunged. If you have previously convicted of any crime, you might not be eligible for a sealing or expungement, either.  

Additionally, the state of Florida offers the expungement of your arrest records if you were arrested, “contrary to the law or by mistake.” (Florida Statutes 943.0581 (2018.). 

Can I Seal or Expunge My Florida Criminal Record if I Was Convicted of a Crime? 

There is a large list of crimes that aren’t eligible for expungement or sealing under Florida law. You will want to consult with a Florida record expungement attorney if you have pleaded no contest, nolo contendere, or guilty to any crime and want to know whether is on the list of disqualifying charges. 

As an example, you cannot have your Florida criminal record sealed or expunged if you were found guilty of any felony or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

What If I Was A Victim of Human Trafficking?

If you were a victim of human trafficking and you have been convicted or arrested for a prostitution or obscenity offense, you may petition to expunge or seal your criminal record. However, in this case, your petition must also include:

  1. Your sworn statement that you’re are eligible for expungement and that you don’t have any other pending petitions to seal or expunge, and
  2. If it exists, some form of official documentation that you were a victim of human trafficking

How Do I File For Expungement in Florida?

In order to file for expungement in the state of Florida, you must first get a certificate of eligibility. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement has the necessary forms and instructions in their Expunge/Seal Package.

What is the Right to Deny? 

Once you’ve had your criminal records expunged, you can lawfully deny the arrest or conviction that is covered by the expungement. However, there are limits in Florida to your right to deny. You must not deny your arrest or conviction if you are:

  1. Seeking employment by a Criminal Justice Agency
  2. A defendant in a criminal prosecution
  3. Seeking employment with any of the schools or agencies listed below:
  • A Criminal Justice Agency
  • The Department of Children and Family Services
  • The Florida Bar Association
  • Department of Juvenile Justice
  • A contractor having a sensitive position in direct contact with children
  • The Department of Education
  • Any private or public school
  • Any local government agency that licenses childcare facilities

Do I Need a Florida Criminal Record Expungement Attorney? 

The rules that exist in the state of Florida to have your criminal record expunged and/or sealed are extremely complicated. In order to have a chance at being successful, you should contact the criminal record expungement lawyers at Stevenson Klotz.

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