How to Seal or Expunge a Restraining Order or Injunction
There is a way to seal or expunge a restraining order/injunction in the state of Florida. The process for doing it is much different than sealing or expunging a criminal case. It’s technically not even called sealing or expunging. What you want is to file motion a motion to make the records confidential under a rule of judicial administration. Specifically, Rule 2.420.
Most attorneys do not even know that this particular rule exists, and they may tell you in accurately that there is no process to seal, or expunged a restraining order, or injunction in Florida. But there is under this rule!
We have heard from judges, that most attorneys who try to file this motion do so improperly, and the motions are severely denied. You don’t want to make that mistake. The rule has specific requirements that you must adhere to if you want to be successful. That is why it is so important to get an attorney who has done this successfully before. We have done this many times and we have had these motions granted for our clients over the years.
Here is a step by step guide on what you need to know.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Can I still do this if I had a final hearing where both sides were present?
- If the injunction was granted, then you will not be able to seal the case.
- If the injunction was denied, then you may be able to seal the case. If the Petitioner is willing, have them sign an a Joint Stipulation agreeing to have the case sealed.
What is the other party did not even show up to the final hearing?
- If the other party did not show up, you will have an easier time getting the record sealed. You should still try and have the Petitioner sign a Joint Stipulation, but it is not a requirement.
What do I have to prove to seal or expunge a restraining order?
- You must prove the Court should seal the record to avoid a substantial injury to innocent third parties. This injury must be weighed against the interest of the State. Ask yourself, is there someone other than myself who was injured because of the injunction? If you can answer yes, you can fight this in court.
Is there an example I can follow?
- Yes, CLICK HERE for an example of the language to use.
The injunction is against my spouse, what do I do now?
- The next step is file for divorce. CLICK HERE to learn about our divorce team ready to help you.