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Sealing and Expungement of Criminal History Records

A criminal record for a misdemeanor or felony charge has life-long consequences. It impacts employment opportunities, housing options, bank loans, educational scholarships, college admissions, and many other social ramifications. Sealing and expungement of a criminal history record is a judicial process that prevents public access to prior arrests and convictions. The ability for an offender to seal or expunge a criminal record has a significant influence on successful and productive re-entry into society.


In petitioning the court for a sealing or expungement of records, an experienced criminal defense law firm that understands the nuances of the judicial system is your best chance of putting closure on the past. The court has broad discretion in granting sealing and expungement. It is a complex matter that requires meticulous preparation and presentation. The legal team at Myers Law Group, P.A. has a deep commitment to those who have made mistakes but are seeking to rebuild their future after a troubled past.


Differences between a Sealed Record and an Expunged Record


In both cases, the public has limited access to a criminal record that is sealed or expunged. However, sealed records can be viewed in their entirety by certain governmental agencies. A criminal history record that is expunged is destroyed by the arresting agency, the prosecution, and the probation officer’s files. Only the Florida Department of Law Enforcement will maintain a copy available only through a court order.


The Severity of a Crime is a Factor


Fortunately, many crimes can be sealed or expunged in Florida. However, some crimes are not eligible. Examples include sex crimes, such as rape, sexual misconduct, a sexual performance involving a child, procuring a minor for prostitution, and voyeurism.


Violent crimes ineligible for removal from a criminal history record include acts of terrorism, murder, manslaughter, homicide, assault or battery, abuse of an elderly or disabled adult, and child abuse.


Other felonies not eligible for sealing or expungement are stalking, enticing a child, human trafficking, drug trafficking, robbery, kidnapping, and imprisonment. To see a complete listing of crimes that are not eligible for sealing or expungement, see Florida Statute 943,084.


Various Types of Expungements include:

  • Administrative expungement is a procedure for persons arrested by mistake or the victim of an unlawful arrest. An example may be a mistaken identity arrest when executing a warrant.
  • Juvenile record expungement can occur at the age of 21. However, it is 26 if the offender attended a juvenile correctional facility or prison. Between 18 and 21 years of age, an offender can petition the court for early expungement if they completed a juvenile diversion program and had no other offenses within five years.
  • Court-ordered sealing or expungement is a judicial process limiting public access to criminal records for persons who meet specific eligibility requirements. It is for crimes not prohibited from sealing and expungement by statutory laws.
  • Self-defense expungement is possible for persons charged with an offense but were found not guilty related to justifiable force, acting in self-defense.
  • Human trafficking expungement is a remedy for victims of human trafficking to clear their names. These victims are forced or coerced to commit a crime, usually for prostitution.  

Contact the Experienced Lawyers at Myers Law Group, P.A.


Having a criminal history record sealed or expunged is a complex process. At Myers Law Group, P.A., we assess each case for eligibility and guide our clients through the process. We are experienced in the process and have successfully sealed and expunged criminal history records for countless clients.


The first step is gathering records and documents and applying for a Certificate of Eligibility through the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. After filing a petition with the court, there is a scheduled formal hearing in front of a judge. The case is presented, and the judge determines if the facts and circumstances justify the request. Our attorneys strongly advocate for our clients, presenting every reason why the sealing or expungement should be granted.


Call the Myers Law Group, P.A. if you believe you may be eligible for the sealing and expungement of criminal records. Our office is located in DeLand, Florida, and we serve clients in Volusia, Seminole, and Orange Counties. Contact our office at 386-873-7835. 

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Myers Law Group

Address:

211 East Rich Avenue

DeLand, FL 32724

Monday – Thursday: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

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Phone: (386) 873-7835

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