How long will a drug charge stay on my record?

Drug charges fall into two categories: misdemeanor and felony. What you are charged with is dependent on many factors including the amount of the substance found in your possession, the circumstances surrounding its discovery, the intent behind the possession of this amount of the substance and others. If you are convicted of a misdemeanor or felony, the conviction will remain on your criminal record indefinitely.

The state of Florida does allow certain individuals convicted of a misdemeanor or felony to seek to seal or expunge the record of their conviction. Florida statute §943.059 sets up the process by which you may have your criminal record sealed, which restricts access to the records from government view, however the record will still be accessible to certain government agencies like the police. Criminal record expungement is covered under Florida statute §943.0585. Expungement restricts access to the record to the public, though certain government agencies may still obtain access to the record through a court order.

Both of these processes would prevent your conviction from being visible during a typical employment background check (unless you are applying for certain government or otherwise highly sensitive positions). However, there are difficult restrictions placed on who may apply for a criminal records sealing or expungement. The option is not available for any individual who has already been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony, or of anyone who has a previous juvenile conviction, a previously sealed or expunged misdemeanor or felony, or is currently under community supervision. More serious crimes such as child abuse, drug trafficking, violent crimes and others are exempt from sealing or expungement.

Posted in: Drug Crimes