If you have been arrested for a crime in Jacksonville or any other part of Florida, or if you have been arrested and formally charged with a crime in Florida, you may be eligible to have your criminal record expunged. The Florida legislature has enacted laws which indicate when a person can or cannot expunge a criminal record, but those laws allow a person to expunge a criminal record in limited circumstances.
If you have been arrested for a crime in Florida, the following are some of the circumstances under which the law does not allow you to have that criminal record expunged. If you were arrested for a crime, formally charged and entered a plea of guilty or no contest to that charge, Florida law does not allow you to expunge that criminal record whether you were adjudicated guilty by the judge, i.e. convicted of the charge, or the judge withheld adjudication. In other words, a person who is arrested for a crime is only eligible to have that criminal record expunged if either formal charges were never brought against him/her or formal charges were brought but then completely dismissed. If a plea of guilty or no contest was entered, Florida law does not allow an expunction of that record (but that person may be eligible to have that criminal record sealed, which is different from expunging a record).
Even where charges were dropped, Florida law only allows a person to expunge a criminal record in certain situations. For instance, if the person was arrested on a particularly serious charge, the law does not allow the record to be expunged. Additionally, depending on the person’s criminal record other than the criminal charge at issue, he/she may or may not be eligible to have the criminal record expunged. Although, keep in mind that a person may not be eligible to have a record expunged but may be eligible to have the same criminal record sealed.
If you have a criminal record and have questions about whether your criminal record can be expunged, feel free to contact us for a free consultation.