Florida’s Expungement & Sealing Law

David Weisselberger | February 9, 2023

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The law in Florida says that a person can only expunge or seal a criminal history record once in their lifetime; and while there are a few exceptions to this hardline rule, those cases are far and few in between. By now, however, you are probably still asking yourself: But what is an expungement/sealing anyways? The answer is simple.

But what is an expungement/sealing anyways? The answer is simple.

Legal Procedures Of Expungements

A criminal history record expungement is the legal process through which a person’s criminal record is physically destroyed from the government’s criminal justice record-keeping systems, making that criminal arrest episode, confidential and not subject to public access.

On the other hand, a criminal history record sealing is the legal process through which a person’s criminal record is ordered by a court to be made confidential and hence, unavailable for the government or public to access; although, no physical destruction takes place when a record is sealed.

Lastly, the reason why there exists an expungement procedure versus a sealing procedure is that some criminal records are allowed to be immediately destroyed, while others do not qualify for immediate destruction. In other words, the Florida Legislature decided that a case being dismissed should not be treated the same way as a case where the defendant took a plea and his/her adjudication of guilt was withheld.

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Therefore, as you can see, the expungement and sealing of criminal history records is a legal mechanism created by the Florida Legislature – vis a vis Florida Statutes – by which a person’s privacy, dignity, and public image can be restored and protected from otherwise slanderous and libelous information.
What this means in everyday terms, is that a criminal record that was once open for the whole public to see will now be protected from the government’s and public’s view through a process that makes the arrest record confidential (i.e., classified). This is a big big deal.

To give you an example, think about it this way: If a person is unlawfully arrested and eventually that case is dismissed by the prosecutor for Constitutional reasons (i.e., insufficient evidence), the record of that arrest remains public; a most unfair outcome.

Unlawful Arrest & Expunging Records

Why is it unfair you might ask? Because that person will have the record of that unlawful arrest surviving the dismissal of the case in court; because that’s how the law is currently written.

Thus, what happens next is that the criminal history record pops up in dozens, if not hundreds, of background search companies online. The record is available for the whole world to see with a simple Google search. And in turn, these innocent people are then subject to risk missing out on an employment opportunity, a bonus opportunity, receiving a higher insurance premium, a higher interest rate on a loan, a scholarship application denied, or maybe even a housing application denied. And these are not all of the possible consequences, the list is bigger. And all of this, because that person was unlawfully arrested. Unfair? Absolutely.

That is why the expungement and sealing law exists, and that is why Erase The Case exists as well! We get it, expungement and sealings are not a luxury but a necessity!

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David Weisselberger
Author | Founder
"David Weisselberger is the founder of Erase The Case. He completed his Bachelor of Arts at the University of Florida, & also his Juris Doctor from UM School of Law. Afterwards, He has been working as a former Miami-Dade County Assistant Public Defender. Also, as a solo lawyer and former associate at South Florida’s honored Saban & Solomon Law Firm. He has learned firsthand the effects people face from having a public criminal arrest record mark their lives. Therefore, David has always been working hard to help people get rid of haunting crimnal past and have a second chance in life"

Trusted process. Proven results.

We have provided more expungements than any other law firm in the state of Florida, but don't just take our word for it.  
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  • google logogoogle reviews stars
    "My experience with this law firm was exceptional. After submitting the required documents, they took care of everything with ease, professionalism, and expediency. I was kept informed throughout the process. In only 3 months, all record of my case was erased from my background check. I used the "expunge now, pay later" option, which let me pay the fee over time with Affirm."
    Lee County
  • google logogoogle reviews stars
    "I'm beyond happy right now, I contacted David about my case few months ago and right away he was able to help me , the whole process was very easy they kept me updated every step now my case is sealed.very professional I recommend this firm, if I can give more than 5 stars I would. "
    Miami-Dade County
  • google logogoogle reviews stars
    "I would recommend anyone that has a background to use Erase the Case Services. David is a great lawyer answers all of your questions keeps you updated during the process. The staff there are excellent people very professional. The process doesn't even take long!"
    Broward County
  • google logogoogle reviews stars
    "After having doubts about Erase the case the expungement law firm, David and his team gave me the piece of mind I've been searching for after successfully expunging my case... I 100% recommend Erase the case to anybody in need of help. Again, thanks David for everything."
    Orange County
  • google logogoogle reviews stars
    "It was such a clear and straightforward experience all the way through, I'm grateful and thankful that I found their services! Companies like this give hope to those that have had hardships in life a chance to a better future. Erase the Case did an amazing job, they stand on behalf of those looking to change their lives for good! Thank you."
    Hillsborough County
  • google logogoogle reviews stars
    "David is extremely professional and knowledgable in his craft. He and his team will ensure you receive excellent legal care and advice. I highly recommend him to anyone looking for representation that you can trust and at reasonable retainers. Do not hesitate to reach out. Thanks David"
    Palm Beach County
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    "Erase the case has been a pleasure to work with. Attorneys are respectful of your situation and provide realistic honest expectations. They are very responsive and there if you need to contact them. It's great to be able to speak directly with the attorney regarding any issue."
    Duval County
  • google logogoogle reviews stars
    "Great communication and keeping me updated with the process. He handled everything so professionally and kept in the loop at all times. I highly recommend EraseTheCase! Thank you so much for your assistance with my case."
    Pinellas County
  • google logogoogle reviews stars
    "David made the process simple and thoroughly explained everything. He made himself available to answer questions and was timely in responding to emails. He is very knowledgeable In this area and I would recommend him to anyone looking to complete this process."
    Polk County
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