Gainesville Sealing or Expungement Lawyer
If you have ever been arrested, given a notice to appear or otherwise charged with a crime, you have a criminal record. Even if your charges were later dropped, your criminal record will still contain the information from the original arrest or Complaint. This record will remain open to public scrutiny which may include family, friends or future employers.
A criminal record, even many years old, can potentially affect a person’s chances of getting a job, a promotion or admitted to the school of their choice. Something as small as a shoplifting charge that is ten or twenty years old can be accessed by using the internet by any employer and used to deny a person a job.
Fortunately, in Florida, there is a provision in the law that gives us the ability to expunge or seal criminal records in many circumstances. Expungement and sealing allow you to remove an arrest and/or charge from your record completely and in most circumstances, legally deny that the incident, ever occurred. This way on a work or school application, the applicant can legally deny the existence of that part of his or her criminal record. If you think you may want to seal or expunge your record, please contact the Law Offices of Gilbert A. Schaffnit as soon as possible to discuss your options with an experienced Gainesville sealing or expungement lawyer.
Florida Statutes, § 943.059 sets forth the guidelines and steps in order to seal your criminal record. A sealing is very similar to an expungement in that your sealed record is not available for public scrutiny; however, the record is not destroyed and can be opened with an order from the court. That being said, sealing is more widely available than an expungement as you can seal many offenses, even if you entered a plea to the offense (as long as adjudication was withheld and you have no prior adjudications). A sealing is not available to everyone. To determine whether you meet the criteria for a sealing of your record, contact the Law Offices of Gilbert A. Schaffnit for a free consultation.
Florida Statutes, § 943.585 sets forth the guidelines and steps in order to expunge your criminal record. Expungement means that the record of your arrest held by the police or other arresting agency is physically destroyed and is not visible on a standard criminal background check. Just as in a sealing, in most circumstances, you can legally deny that the incident, arrest and/or charge ever occurred. To determine whether you meet the criteria for an expungement of your record, contact the Law Offices of Gilbert A. Schaffnit for a free consultation.
The sealing or expunging of your record will take several months to complete and there is no way to expedite the process. You can begin the sealing process in most cases once your charges are dismissed or you have successfully completed your term of probation or deferred prosecution. Additionally the laws governing the sealing and expunging of criminal records is ever changing. Don’t wait until you are about to apply for a job or a new school before seeking a sealing or expungement. If you think you may want to seal or expunge your record, please contact the Law Offices of Gilbert A. Schaffnit as soon as possible to discuss your options with an experienced Florida sealing or expungement lawyer.