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Why Was a Fire Fighter’s Request to Seal His Record Denied?

In the case of Jorge Gonzalez versus the State of Florida, Mr. Gonzalez, a Miami fire fighter, was arrested after he bought some cocaine.  He later pled no contest to the charge.  The judge who accepted his plea told him to return to court in six weeks in order to ask to have his criminal […]

Can a Judge Refuse to Seal Your Record in Palm Beach County Florida Without Giving a Valid Reason?

In the case of Gerald Kenneth Cole versus the State of Florida, Mr. Cole was charged with committing the crime of lewd or lascivious molestation.  He went to trial, and a jury found him not guilty. Following the jury’s decision, Cole filed a petition with the court asking to have his record sealed.  The presiding […]

How is a Judge’s Discretion to Deny Your Petition to Expunge Your Criminal Record Limited?

Florida law provides that “any request for expunction of a criminal history record may be denied at the sole discretion of the court.”  However, that discretion is limited.  For example, in the case of Kim Wells versus the State of Florida, Ms. Wells filed a petition with the court asking that her criminal record be […]

Does Being Adjudicated Guilty Mean That You Cannot Get Your Record Expunged?

In the case of Julie Matthews versus the State of Florida, Ms. Matthews appealed a judge’s decision to not expunge her criminal-history record for grand theft of an automobile based upon the following facts: “During the evening of March 8, 1995, . . . Julie Matthews was with a group of friends at a restaurant. […]

Your Right to Seal Your Record Versus the Public’s Right to Know

In the case of S.L.P. versus the State of Florida, an individual (with the initials “S.L.P.”) asked a judge to seal her criminal record.  The judge denied her request on the ground that the public’s interest in having access to S.L.P.’s criminal-history record outweighed S.L.P.’s interest in sealing her record. S.L.P. appealed the judge’s decision […]

Do You Have the Right to Have Your Criminal Record Expunged?

In the case of Scott Baker versus the State of Florida, a judge denied Mr. Baker’s petition to expunge his criminal-history record even though the prosecutor’s office had previously decided to not file any charges in his case.  The judge did so because Mr. Baker worked at a car wash where he had contact with […]

Can a Judge Deny Your Request to Seal Your Record Simply Because Adjudication was Withheld?

In the case of Anderson v. State of Florida, the relevant facts are as follows: In 1993, Mr. Anderson pled no contest to charges of grand theft and aggravated stalking in connection with an incident in which he grabbed a former girlfriend’s purse and ran away.  The purse was recovered and no violence or threat […]

Does Getting a Pardon from the Governor Automatically Mean That You Can Get Your Criminal Record Sealed or Expunged?

A pardon has been defined as “the forgiveness of crime and the penalty associated with it.” In Florida, it is the governor who has the power to grant pardons. Assuming you are fortunate enough to obtain a pardon, does that automatically mean that you can get your criminal record sealed or expunged? That was the question decided by the Florida Supreme Court in the case of R.J.L. v. State of Florida. This article looks at that case.

Can Even a Serious Charge Such as Murder Be Expunged?

According to Florida law, a judge is not allowed to deny an individual’s request to have his criminal record expunged simply because of the seriousness of the charge. This article examines one case in which the judge mistakenly did just that.

Which crimes cannot be sealed or expunged in Florida?

Your criminal history record cannot be sealed or expunged in Florida if you were found guilty by a judge or pled guilty or nolo contendere (no contest) to certain crimes, even if adjudication was withheld and even if you were convicted of simply attempting or conspiring to commit certain crimes. The following is a list of […]

Can my criminal record be sealed?


Please answer questions as truthfully as possible to find out if you may be eligible to have your Florida criminal record sealed.

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If you have previously been convicted of a felony, misdemeanour or violation of a criminal ordinance, you cannot have your Florida Criminal Record expunged.

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If you have previously had a criminal record expunged, you cannot have your Florida criminal record expunged.

 Yes  No

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If you are currently under house arrest or probation, or another form of Court supervision, you cannot have your Florida criminal record expunged at this time.

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This quiz is designed to educate and provide general guidance. It is not intended to offer legal advice, and does not create an Attorney-Client relationship. Never make decisions about any legal matter without first consulting an attorney.