Criminal Record Sealing or Expungement in Florida
Criminal Record Sealing
Sealing a criminal record means that the public cannot obtain your criminal history. Some government entities, however, do have access to your entire record. In extremely rare occasions, a judge can order a criminal record to be unsealed, but, again, that is exceedingly uncommon. Indeed, court and law enforcement personnel can be charged with a misdemeanor if they disclose a sealed criminal record without a court order.
Criminal Record Expungement
Expungement is the most powerful limitation on law enforcement’s access to a criminal record. When a record has been expunged, the courts and all the government agencies who have possession of your record must physically destroy them, consequently, this makes disclosure accidentally or otherwise impossible. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement does retain one copy of your criminal history. Those same government entities which would have had access to a sealed record will be informed that you, the subject of the record, have had your record expunged; those entities do not have access to the record itself without a court order. All they will receive is a caveat or warning statement indicating that “Criminal Information has been Expunged from this Record”.
Eligibility For Florida Criminal Record Sealing or Expungement
To have a criminal record sealed or expunged, you must meet certain qualifications.
You should attempt to have any criminal case expunged or sealed if:
- You received a withhold of adjudication as part of your sentence on a criminal charge.
- Your criminal charge was not filed or not processed by the State Attorney’s Office.
- Your charge was dismissed.
- You were found “not guilty” by a judge or jury.
Sealing or Expungement Ineligible
Although you may fit the profile above which qualifies you for an expungement or a sealing, you need to be aware of the factors which might disqualify you from either a sealing or an expungement. Contact McGhan Law, LLC today at (912) 576-3640 to find out if you can seal or expunge your criminal record! Or, schedule a consultation online.