Every time you are arrested for a crime in the State of Florida, a negative mark appears on your criminal record. Even if you were not convicted after your arrest, your criminal record can be jeopardized. Having a criminal record can create problematic situations and limit your future opportunities. An arrest on your criminal record can make it difficult for you to:
- obtain job opportunities
- rent an apartment or home
- pursue a degree or professional certification
- receive bank loans
- receive student loans
These complications are life altering and can change the course of your future. Fortunately, there is a way in which you can “erase” arrests from your criminal record. You can remove arrests from your criminal record if your case was dismissed or the State of Florida drops your case.
What is Expungement?
The process of clearing an arrest from your criminal record is called expungement. When you expunge a criminal arrest from your record, you remove the arrest so that it is no longer a public record. This means that future employers and landlords cannot find out about your arrest through a background check. The mistakes you may have made in your past will stay there, allowing you to have a second chance and a limitless future. You may expunge misdemeanor, felony, and juvenile arrest records.
Basic Requirements for Expungement.
Once your case is closed, you can consider expunging your criminal record. Before you can petition for expungement in the state of Florida, you must meet four basic requirements.
1. You must not have had a record sealed or expunged before.
2. You must not be under any form of court supervision, such as probation.
3. You must not have received an adjudication of guilt.
4. You must not have been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony.
If you meet these basic requirements, you may be eligible for the expungement of your criminal record. Expungement is a relatively quick process. After you petition for expungement, it usually takes about 4-6 months for your arrest to be erased from your record if the State of Florida grants your request.
If you are considering expungement, it may be beneficial to speak with an experienced Florida attorney. We will evaluate your case to determine if you meet the basic requirements for expungement, help you with complicated paperwork, and ensure that your expungement petition is completed successfully.