There are many ways to fight drunk driving charges if you receive them, but you must be sure you consider all the options before you take action in a way that may not best serve your interests or protect your freedoms. In many cases, an experienced attorney can identify a strong strategy a driver can use to defend against DUI charges. However, in some instances, defeating the charges completely is simply not a viable option. If you believe that your DUI charges are a slam-dunk conviction, is there still any action you can take to protect yourself?
In some cases, yes. Depending on a number of different factors, you may have grounds to request that a court either seal records of the conviction or even expunge them. Neither of these protections are blanketly available to anybody who has the bright idea of requesting them, however. The court considers requests to seal or expunge certain records based on a compelling argument by the defendant.
An experienced attorney can help you assess your circumstances to determine if you have grounds for either a seal or expungement of the conviction. Of course, it is always better to build a strong defense if possible, so be sure your consultation with the attorney addresses any defenses you may not realize you have available.
If you do qualify for one or the other, you will enjoy two possible levels of privacy for the records of the conviction. Under a seal, DUI conviction records that would otherwise be public are deemed nonpublic. In this instance, only certain government or government-affiliated agencies and organizations can view the record.
However, you may also qualify for expungement. Under expungement, even government entities cannot access the records without a court order. If an individual or organization without a court order attempts to access the record, it will simply state “Criminal History Record Expunged Pursuant to Florida Statutes 943.”