What's the expungement and sealing process?


First, you may want to ask for a Personal Review for Criminal History

  • Call the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) at 850.410.7870 and ask specific questions about qualifying. For example: “I was found guilty of a DUI in NY in 1990 – do I qualify?  That was my only arrest.”

Mail Application packet to FDLE:

  • $75.00 money order payable to FDLE
  • Completed fingerprint card
  • Application signed before a Notary Public (Sect. B completed if expunging record)
  • Certified copy of Final Disposition of your arrest(s)

You can go to the FDLE website to see what month’s applications they are currently reviewing (can be a four- to eight-month wait).

You will receive a Certificate of Eligibility from FDLE or a letter denying your Certificate of Eligibility, including reasons for denial.

Petition to Expunge or Seal Record

Once you get a Certificate of Eligibility, the next step is filing documents with the Court in the county where the arrest/court action occurred.

You will need to file:

  • Certificate of Eligibility
  • Petition to Expunge or Seal – Attach Certificate of Eligibility
  • Affidavit
  • Proposed Order to Expunge/Seal
  • Filing fee: Call the Expungement Clerk (Hillsborough County: 813.276.8100 ext. 3800) to find out the Clerk's fee and the Court Division and phone number

Contact the Expungement/Sealing Clerk in the County where the arrest occurred to find out whether a hearing is required and what the next steps are. For example, Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties do not require a hearing. Those counties require that you file the above documents with the Court, along with a copy of the Petition to the State Attorney’s Office, FDLE, and the arresting agency.

If you have questions about these processes, FDLE or the Clerk's Office are very helpful.

Are you a Hillsborough County renter having housing problems? Help is available!

The Hillsborough County Housing Stability Program provides Hillsborough tenants the knowledge, resources, and services to effectively, efficiently, and amicably solve their disputes with their landlords outside the court system.

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If you live or have a case in Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas or Sarasota counties, we may be able to help.

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