Judicial Circuits of Florida
Due to reforms that occurred in 1973, Florida has a two-tiered state trial court system. While the lower tier consists of county courts, the upper tier consists of circuit courts. A circuit court has been established to serve each judicial circuit that was created by the state legislature. There are 20 total judicial circuits in the Florida court system. At Hanlon Law, our Florida expungement lawyers have expunged or sealed criminal records in all the judicial circuits of Florida. While our offices are located in Tampa, Clearwater, and Sarasota, you should not be concerned about whether we have an office in the judicial circuit where we would need to petition for your record sealing or expungement. We are familiar with local procedures and judges in each circuit. We will follow the expungement or sealing of your record through every phase of the process, no matter where you reside or where your record is kept.The Judicial Circuits of Florida
Most criminal and civil cases originate in circuit courts, which have general trial jurisdiction over legal cases that have not been assigned by statute to county courts. Among other matters, the circuit courts have jurisdiction over criminal prosecutions for all felonies. These include many criminal matters that may be eligible for expungement or sealing. The circuit courts also hear appeals from county court decisions.
Voters elect circuit court judges, and they serve six-year terms. The number of judges in each circuit depends on the population and the caseload in the area. The chief judge is selected from among the circuit and county judges in each judicial circuit to handle administrative responsibilities for the trial courts within the circuit.What are the Different Judicial Circuits?
Florida is divided into six regions: Northwest, Northeast, Central, Sun Coast, Southeast, and Southern. There are three judicial circuits in the Northwest. The First Judicial Circuit contains Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, and Walton Counties. The Second Judicial Circuit contains Franklin, Gadsden, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, and Wakulla Counties. The Fourteenth Judicial Circuit consists of Bay, Calhoun, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, and Washington Counties.
The Third, Fourth, Seventh, and Eighth Judicial Circuits are the four judicial circuits in the Northeast. The Third Judicial Circuit consists of Columbia, Dixie, Hamilton, Lafayette, Madison, Suwannee, and Taylor Counties. The Fourth Judicial Circuit consists of Clay, Duval, and Nassau Counties. The Seventh Judicial Circuit serves St. Johns, Flagler, Putnam, and Volusia Counties. The Eighth Judicial Circuit serves Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Gilchrist, Levy, and Union Counties.
The Fifth, Ninth, Tenth, and Eighteenth Judicial Circuits are in Central Florida. The Fifth Judicial Circuit serves Citrus, Hernando, Lake, Marion, and Sumter Counties. The Ninth Judicial Circuit serves Orange and Osceola Counties. The Tenth Judicial Circuit serves Hardee, Highlands, and Polk Counties. The Eighteenth Judicial Circuit serves Seminole and Brevard Counties.
The Sun Coast region includes the Sixth, Twelfth, Thirteenth, and Twentieth Judicial Circuits. The Sixth Judicial Circuit serves Pasco and Pinellas Counties. The Twelfth Judicial Circuit serves DeSoto, Manatee, and Sarasota Counties. The Thirteenth Judicial Circuit serves Hillsborough County. The Twentieth Judicial Circuit serves Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry, and Lee Counties.
The Fifteenth, Seventeenth, and Nineteenth Judicial Circuits are in Southeast Florida. The Fifteenth Judicial Circuit serves Palm Beach County. The Seventeenth Judicial Circuit serves Broward County. The Nineteenth Judicial Circuit serves Indian River, Martin, Okeechobee, and St. Lucie Counties. The Southern region of Florida is home to two circuits. The Eleventh Judicial Circuit handles legal matters in Miami-Dade County. The Sixteenth Judicial Circuit handles legal matters in Monroe County.Hire a Seasoned Criminal Defense Lawyer to Clean Your Record
Expungement and record sealing are processes over which judges and law enforcement officials have some discretion. It is important to retain an experienced criminal defense attorney to guide and represent you during the process of seeking either of these forms of relief. If you are interested in obtaining expungement or sealing in any of the judicial circuits of Florida, you should contact the expungement lawyers at Hanlon Law. Call us at 800.373.1974 or contact us through our online form.