Sealing and Expungement
The sealing or expungement process is when the records of certain criminal offenses can be “sealed” or “expunged” from the public record, including, but not limited to, the court file, police reports, or mugshots. The process of sealing or expungement is done after a case is closed. For first time offenders, sealing or expunging a criminal record is essential to ensuring that their lives go back to normal and that their prior record is not held against them when it comes to future employment, housing or education.
What is Sealing of a criminal record?
Sealing of a criminal record is when all the documents, papers, and reports of a person’s arrest and prosecution are sealed from public view. After a record is sealed, an entity cannot access those records without a court order. Sealing is available in circumstances when someone was convicted of a crime, but adjudication was withheld. Certain offenses, usually violent crimes, such as an aggravated battery, armed robbery, sexual battery, and homicide offenses, are not eligible to be sealed. Once a record is sealed, an individual can petition the court for the record to be expunged after 10 years.
What is Expungement of a criminal record?
Expungement of a criminal record is when all the documents, papers, and reports of a person’s arrest and prosecution are destroyed. After an expungement, there is no record that an individual was ever arrested or charged. Expungement is only available after the charges against an individual were dismissed or 10 years after their record was sealed. All offenses that result in dismissal are eligible for expungement.
How do I get my record sealed or expunged?
To qualify for a sealing or expungement, you must first be determined to be eligible for sealing or expungement. The individual seeking sealing or expungement must apply for a certificate of eligibility with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. After the certificate is issued, the individual must then petition the court with jurisdiction over their case to sign an order to that effect. The process seems simple, but oftentimes individuals who are not educated in the law or the procedures involved will fail in their efforts to get their record sealed or expungement. The process can also be time-consuming, resulting in missed days from work or school, waiting for hours on in at the clerk’s office, and still not getting the desired result.
How do I get my mugshot taken down online?
The removal of mugshots online is a time consuming and costly process. Even after obtaining an order sealing or expunging your record, mugshot websites will still display an individual’s arrest and the charges. The record will often show up in credit reports and some background check services after the order to seal or expunge has been signed. There over 500 websites that buy criminal records and post them online shortly after the arrest. These websites are predatory and seek to profit from the arrest of individuals who are often falsely accused of a crime.
To get the mugshots and corresponding records removed from the internet, you will absolutely need professional help. A quality lawyer knows the procedures necessary to get websites and background search companies to remove mugshots and criminal records of someone who has had their record sealed or expunged. Removing digital information of an arrest such as a mugshot and the charges is often the biggest concern of a first time offender. Contact an experienced lawyer like Brian Kirlew, Esq., to walk you through the process.
Heidi S. Kirlew
Our Areas of Specialty
The fact is, there’s always something going on in a thriving metropolis like Miami. That means it’s easier than you might imagine to find yourself facing criminal charges. Given the dynamic nature of our city, it only makes sense for Brian Kirlew and his defense team to be flexible and responsive to the needs of his clients.
Our firm represents clients charged with any and all types of offenses in Miami and the greater South Florida area. The skills of an intelligent and experienced Miami criminal defense lawyer translate to all areas of criminal law. Therefore, we do not like to be bound by one or two particular areas as our “specialty.” We find defending against a broad spectrum of crimes to be more interesting and enjoyable to our practice.
Brian Kirlew, Esq. is experienced in defending all kinds of criminal felony and misdemeanor charges in the greater Miami area, including:
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When you’re facing criminal charges in Miami, time is of the essence. It’s important that you have the proper legal representation to ensure that you get the best outcome possible from your trial. At the Kirlew Law Firm, you, your family, and your business are what matter most to us. We want to ensure that you enjoy every advantage that our thorough and collaborative approach to criminal defense has to offer.
Brian Kirlew is here to represent you. You can schedule your free phone consultation with our criminal defense lawyers today to begin building a sound defense strategy.