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Expungement Filing in Jacksonville

Criminal Defense Lawyers Assisting Jacksonville Residents

There are around 3,930 crimes reported each year per 100,000 people in Jacksonville, which is the county seat of Duval County. The vast majority of these crimes are property crimes. People who are arrested or charged with crimes may find that they are haunted by their criminal records when they try to find a job or secure housing. Expungement of your criminal record can make it easier to start over. If you are interested in expungement filing in Jacksonville, you should retain an experienced attorney. There are several steps to obtaining an expungement, and it is important to seek guidance from a criminal defense attorney with experience in obtaining expungements and record sealing. The Jacksonville expungement lawyers at Hanlon Law may be able to help.

Expungement Filing in Jacksonville

Filing for expungement carries many benefits. If your petition is granted, you can lawfully deny or fail to acknowledge your prior criminal history in most situations. The physical criminal record will be destroyed, although a confidential copy will be kept by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). The first step of filing for expungement is applying for a certificate of eligibility.

Applying for a Certificate of Eligibility

You apply to the FDLE for the certificate of eligibility. In addition to filing the application for the certificate, you need to submit other documents, such as a full set of fingerprints and a certified copy of the final disposition related to the record. You need to get the certified disposition and arrest affidavit from the clerk of court.

The FDLE decides whether you are statutorily eligible for the certificate, and it can deny the certificate for various reasons. A denial might be issued when the record establishes that you were adjudicated guilty or delinquent for committing an act arising out of the arrest or crime in the record, the record establishes that you were adjudicated guilty of a crime ineligible for expungement or you were adjudicated delinquent for committing a felony or misdemeanor under section 943.051(3)(b), or you have previously obtained a judicial expungement or sealing of your criminal record under certain code sections.

If your application for a certificate of eligibility is in error, you can ask for a review of the denial. If the denial is grounded on information in your criminal record that is believed to be in error or incomplete, the procedure for reviewing and correcting the record is set forth in Florida Administrative Code Rule 11C-8.001. If the criminal history information is accurate, but the law may have been improperly applied, it is possible to appeal the FDLE’s decision.

Even if you are not eligible for court-ordered expungement, it may be possible to find other relief under a different code section. For example, if you had previously obtained an expungement for a different offense and were then charged with a crime because you needed to defend yourself against an assailant, you might be able to obtain a lawful self-defense expungement under section 943.0578.

Filing an Application for Expungement

You can file your expungement petition only if you have gotten a certificate of eligibility. The petition should be filed with the court that handled the case. If you committed a crime in Jacksonville, you probably were charged in Duval County, so you would need to file the petition in Duval County. The filing would need to be presented to the arresting agency and the state attorney or statewide prosecutor.

Contact a Seasoned Expungement Lawyer

The process of obtaining a court-ordered expungement can take several months or up to a year. The court has some discretion over whether to grant your expungement, making it important to consult an experienced attorney. If you are interested in expungement filing in Jacksonville, you should talk about your situation with the attorneys at Hanlon Law. We have obtained expungements for thousands of criminal records across the state. Call us at 800.373.1974 or contact us through our online form.

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