Now comes the hard part because, sometimes, the prosecutors are going to object to your Petition. The problem isn’t just the objection. The problem is they’re also going to file a request to take judicial notice of the court file and you do not want to let them get away with that. That’s like the whole trip wire in some action movie that blows the whole thing up. You do not want to blow up all your hard work.
The objection, all that means is that the judge will not sign your petition and order until you have a hearing. And, scheduling a hearing is not always the easiest thing if you’ve never done it before. I suggest you get ahold of the judicial assistant and then the judicial assistant–if they’re nice–will tell you how they do things. You’ll have to coordinate with the prosecutor and you’ll get back with the JA (judicial assistant) and say “here’s the time that we’ve got and that we both agree on”.
Once you agree on a time you’re going to file a Notice of Hearing. Again, I don’t like getting legal documents off the internet, but you can find some reliable notices of hearing online. File your notice of hearing with the clerk of court.
Finally, the last step is, show up for your hearing. But, don’t just show up for your hearing empty handed because then you’re going to get screwed. Show up at the hearing with the orders that you want the judge to sign. After all, you are going to ask for the judge to put on a piece of paper that your case is ordered to be sealed or expunged. That piece of paper goes to FDLE. It goes to the police department. It goes to all these people who then read it and go “Ok, I guess we have to erase this thing.” You have to show up with those orders, hand them to the judge, and make sure you have the envelopes and whathaveyou too. And that way, on the off chance that you win–citizens don’t usually win these things, but you know, people win the lottery. So, you could win. And, be prepared for your success. Have the orders, have the envelopes made out to all the people that need it.
That’s how you seal or expunge something.
It takes six, seven, nine months, it can take up to a year. It’s a long process. But, like Willie Nelson said about divorce. Why is it so expensive? Because its worth it. Why is this so time consuming? Because its worth it.
So please, take advantage of Florida’s laws permitting you to seal or expunge your record. You want to do this. It will help you in many, many ways.
I wish you luck.