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A Public Defender Cannot Represent You In The Expungement or Sealing Process.

Did you know that a Public Defender Cannot Represent you in the Expungement and Sealing Process?

Although you may have been represented by the public defender when you resolved your criminal case, the Public Defender’s Office cannot assist you in the sealing or expungement of your criminal record.

The Attorney General’s Office addressed this issue:

AGO 95-45, July 14, 1995: Public Defender can’t represent indigent re seal & expunge – Section 27.51, Florida Statutes, does not authorize a public defender to represent an indigent person for the purpose of a Motion to Expunge or Seal the indigent’s criminal records, regardless of whether the public defender may have previously been appointed to represent the individual.

Attorney General, Robert A. Butterworth states in his advisory opinion that “.. Motion to Expunge or Seal Criminal Records is not a circumstance in which the indigent's liberty interests are at stake but rather appears to be a separate civil proceeding.”

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