Staff Report

Broward State Attorney Mike Satz’s expanded program to assist adults who qualify to have a single Broward criminal charge sealed or expunged from public view continues today (Jan. 26) with another Expungement and Sealing Workshop at the Miramar Cultural Center, 2400 Civic Center Place in Miramar. The event is from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.

A lone criminal offense on a criminal record can sometimes keep an individual from securing gainful employment or renting a place to live. It can also make it difficult to obtain certification or special licenses, among other problems.

“Even though a person has been cleared of a criminal allegation, or they have successfully completed a diversion program or probation and paid their debt to society, that person can still be negatively impacted by public use of such information,” Satz said. “Expunging or sealing that record may help eliminate the impact that charge might have on a person’s life going forward.”

Any person who wants to know if they qualify for expungement or sealing under Florida Statute 943 should attend this workshop with their photo ID. The State Attorney’s staff, with assistance from the Broward Clerk of Courts and the

Broward Sheriff’s Office, will assist qualifying applicants, at no charge, to prepare the state application required by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE).

The FDLE website describes its process and also lists a number of reasons under state law for possible denial such as a prior adjudication of guilt for offenses, including DUI charges, and offenses that are violent. FDLE charges a $75 processing fee that the applicant sends directly to that state agency after SAO helps complete the paperwork.

More than 700 people have qualified to apply to FDLE for sealing or expungement in the first five countywide workshops. In addition, the State Attorney’s Office, supported by community groups like the NAACP, has helped more than 1,000 youth erase the record of their encounter with law enforcement from the public eye since 2007.