Record Sealing Or Expungement: Is It Right For You?

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The existence of a criminal record can be a major stumbling block. If a prospective employer, landlord, educational institution or business partner performs a routine search of public records, you may be denied an opportunity to improve your life. But some people who have been arrested for crimes can seal their records, preventing anyone outside the criminal justice system from learning about the event.

Cotton & Gates, Attorneys at Law, is a firm that helps people obtain expungements and seal their criminal records. Our criminal law attorneys provide efficient and cost-effective representation for those eligible for such actions. We serve people throughout the Northwest Panhandle, including Fort Walton Beach, Destin and Pensacola.

Eligibility For Expungement Or Record Sealing

Florida courts grant expungements and seal records only in certain circumstances.

You may be eligible for an expungement if you were arrested but not charged by the state's attorney, the charge against you was dismissed, or you were found not guilty at trial. If the expungement is granted, only one copy of your criminal record will be retained by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The department will only release information concerning the record if it receives a court order or upon the request of certain government agencies. Other law enforcement agencies with knowledge of your arrest will be instructed to physically destroy their records.

You may be eligible to have your record sealed if the adjudication was withheld. If the court grants your record sealing petition, government agencies will retain the record of the arrest, but it will not be revealed through routine background checks.

You cannot get an expungement or have your record sealed if the arrest resulted in a conviction, or if you were arrested for certain crimes such as a sex crime or fraud.

Reasonable Rates And Effective Representation

Our criminal law attorneys can advise you on whether you are eligible for an expungement or record sealing. If you are, we can represent you for a reasonable fee. The benefits of an expungement or record sealing are significant. Let us put our experience to work for you.

Free Consultation — Contact A Lawyer

To schedule a consultation about getting an expungement or having your record sealed, call Cotton & Gates, Attorneys at Law, at 850-855-4520 or send us an email.