Not everybody has a criminal record, but the people who do often know that they want to get rid of it. The unfortunate truth is that even fewer people qualify to have their criminal records sealed or expunged.
Law Offices of Germain & McCarthy, LLC helps clients all over the greater Melbourne area with the expunction or sealing of criminal records, including communities in Volusia County, Osceola County, Brevard County, Indian River County, Seminole County, and Orange County. Our Melbourne expungement attorneys can review your case as soon as you call (321) 253-3447 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
This section of our website is dedicated to providing answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive regarding criminal record sealing or expunction. You can learn more about the difference between sealing and expunging records as well as how the entire process works by visiting our page on record sealing and expungement.
You are ineligible to expunge or seal the criminal record for any offense for which you pleaded guilty, were found guilty, or pleaded nolo contendere (no contest). The following are considered disqualifying charges under the Florida Statutes that cannot be sealed or expunged, even if an adjudication of guilt was withheld:
A criminal record is created as soon as a person is arrested and fingerprinted. The record includes the ultimate disposition of that arrest, but the record of the actual arrest remains public regardless of the case outcome.
Under Florida Statute § 943.0585, a person can only expunge the criminal history record pertaining to one arrest or one incident of alleged criminal activity.
In certain cases, a person may be able to expunge the criminal history record pertaining to more than one arrest, but only if the additional arrests directly relate to the original arrest. You are only allowed to expunge records relating to a single criminal incident.
Yes. As of July 1, 2013, criminal records sealed or expunged in jurisdictions outside the state of Florida no longer disqualify applicants from to sealing or expunging Florida criminal records.
Yes. When judges withhold or defer adjudications of guilt in certain cases, alleged offenders can be found guilty without necessarily being convicted. As a result, these offenses may be sealed or expunged.
In most cases, no court appearance is required. If the State Attorney's Office has any objections though, a hearing may be required at which an appearance would be in your best interest in order to have you personally attest to the importance of having your record sealed or expunged.
Under Florida Statute § 943.0581, a person who was arrested contrary to law or by mistake is entitled to an administrative expunction that will not prohibit them from sealing or expunging another arrest. Applications for administrative expunction must be supported by the endorsement of the head of the arresting agency, the state attorney of the judicial circuit in which the arrest occurred, or either of their designees.
The amount of time that it takes to complete the process of expunging or sealing a criminal record varies, depending on the current caseload and staffing of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). You should generally expect it to take approximately six months, although it may take up to nine months in some cases.
Florida Statute § 943.0585 states that a person whose criminal record is expunged can lawfully deny or fail to acknowledge the arrests covered by the expunged record, except when he or she is:
If you have any additional questions, the Melbourne criminal defense lawyers at Law Offices of Germain & McCarthy, LLC can provide answers during a free, confidential consultation as soon as you call (321) 253-3447.