Clean up Your Florida Criminal Record
If you have been arrested, tried, or convicted of a crime in Florida, your criminal record can create frustrating barriers to moving forward with your professional life. For licensed professionals, the stakes are especially high, because an arrest or allegation of professional or criminal misconduct can result in the suspension or revocation of your license. Sealing or expunging your record will give you peace of mind, knowing that damaging information will not show up in a background check, and will not jeopardize your ability to practice your chosen profession.
Under the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Act, criminal records can be sealed or expunged under certain circumstances. Sealing a record allows you to honestly state on job applications that you have a clean record. Unfortunately, even a sealed record could still be used against you if you become a defendant in a later criminal case. Luckily, Florida also allows for expungement of records. Expunging a record means that it will be physically destroyed, and it will be as if it never existed.
Records That Are Eligible to Be Sealed
If you were arrested but there was no indictment, information or charging document filed, these records can be sealed. Any court can order an agency to expunge a criminal record once you have obtained a certificate of eligibility. If you were indicted, charged, or had some documents filed but the case was dismissed or nolle prossed (abandoned by the prosecution or prosecuting attorney), you will also be able to seal these records. If your record has been sealed, you can seek an expunction after 10 years.
Records relating to certain types of crimes, including sexual misconduct, domestic violence, kidnapping, human trafficking, and robbery cannot be sealed. Most white collar crimes can be sealed, with the exception of violations of the Florida Communications Fraud Act. However, if you have been previously found guilty of an offense, you will not be able to seal subsequent records.
Records that are Eligible to Be Expunged
Any non-judicial record of an illegal or mistaken arrest can be expunged. A charge dismissed before trial because of no information or nolle prosequi may be expunged immediately, if all other charges were disposed of. Many other records cannot be expunged unless they have been sealed for at least 10 years.
Get Help with Sealing or Expunging your Record
The law office of Jeffrey S. Weiner, P.A. has extensive experience with protecting the reputation of professionals who have been accused of criminal misconduct. To find out whether your record is eligible for sealing or expungement, the expertise of a criminal defense attorney is invaluable. In south Florida, contact Jeffrey S. Weiner, P.A. for advice and assistance from a qualified Florida criminal defense attorney who can help you get your record sealed or expunged, so you can move forward with your career.