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Arrest without conviction in Florida

Hi everyone,

I know this isn't the place for legal advice but I would like to hear other people's opinions of the situation especially if they were in similar ones. I am currently finishing up my last semester of nursing school... yay! But unfortunately, I was arrested for Battery over five years ago. I was in a very toxic relationship at the time and there isn't a day that goes by where I wish I just walked away from that situation. I have put this thought on the back burner, however, as NCLEX is slowly approaching, I now have to consider some things.

As for the end result of the case, the arrest led to NO CONVICTION because the State Attorney posted a No Information Notice. It basically states that the case was not suitable for prosecution and action was taken to clear the records and to release any bond. Since the charges were dropped, I didn't have to pay a fine, go to court, or do any rehabilitation program. I was not found guilty or pled guilty, and was not put on probation. I then went ahead and expunged the arrest and what was left of the case but I do know that expungement is pointless as the BON has access to everything.

The part of the application that concerns me is disclosure. Will I be shooting myself in the foot if I disclose this? Is this even necessary to disclose? I know honesty is the best policy but I also don't want to open a can of worms. Would any of you disclose it? I'm not entirely sure what the application asks for, but based on their website,

"Any applicant who has ever been found guilty of or pled guilty or no contest/nolo contendre (regardless of adjudication) to any charge other than a minor traffic offense must list each offense on the application. Applicants with prior criminal convictions may be required to submit the following documentation to the Board ..."

I don't think it applies to me nor does my attorney, but we can never be so sure. I will appreciate any input. I really hope that my past actions don't haunt me in the future. I'll try to update this as I go. Thank you for reading~

I had the exact thing happen to me. Mine was from 2012. The case result was the same and resulted in the same manner. I didn’t disclose it and my background check was approved. Only difference is that I now live in Indiana. 

13 hours ago, NewgradRNOR said:

I had the exact thing happen to me. Mine was from 2012. The case result was the same and resulted in the same manner. I didn’t disclose it and my background check was approved. Only difference is that I now live in Indiana. 

That’s relieving to hear. I’m glad you were able to pass your background check without disclosing the case. Every state is a bit different unfortunately so I’m not entirely sure if Indiana and Florida follow the same guidelines when asking about criminal background for applicants. 

Please keep us updated. I’m currently in my first semester of nursing school with two domestic violence charges (6 & 10 years ago) both led to no convictions. I’m feeling really discouraged with all the conflicting information out there on this, afraid I won’t be able to get my license or a job after all this. 

On 9/20/2020 at 9:34 AM, Nursingstudent1992 said:

Please keep us updated. I’m currently in my first semester of nursing school with two domestic violence charges (6 & 10 years ago) both led to no convictions. I’m feeling really discouraged with all the conflicting information out there on this, afraid I won’t be able to get my license or a job after all this. 

I will try my best! I've reached out to my attorney who handled my expungement since I got a preview of the initial licensure application and asked her how I should answer the following questions:

Criminal History Initial: Have you EVER been convicted of, or entered a plea of guilty, nolo contendere, or no contest to, a crime in any jurisdiction other than a minor traffic offense? You must include all misdemeanors and felonies, even if adjudication was withheld.

Sealed Criminal History: Have you EVER had any records sealed pursuant to section 943.059, F.S., or other states applicable statute?

 

I was never convicted because the charge was dropped before I could even go to court, so I can put 'No' for the first question because that is the truth. My record was also EXPUNGED under 943.0585, therefore I can put 'No' for the second question as well.

From my knowledge I know that if you were found NOT GUILTY by a jury or a judge, the case may be eligible to be sealed only. You may be able to answer 'No' for Question 1, but you have to answer 'Yes' for Question 2, which you may have to disclose to the BON.

Anyway, if you can expunge/seal both of those charges, I would try to do so. It really depends if the charges were dropped or if the judge found you not guilty that led to no convictions. I hope you like nursing school so far! It's going to fly by before you know it.

So it sounds like you can put No for both questions? Have you heard back from your attorney yet? Both of my cases were “disposed by prosecutor” But are not sealed or expunged. I know they can’t be expunged in my state (Florida). What state are you in?

2 hours ago, Nursingstudent1992 said:

So it sounds like you can put No for both questions? Have you heard back from your attorney yet? Both of my cases were “disposed by prosecutor” But are not sealed or expunged. I know they can’t be expunged in my state (Florida). What state are you in?

Yes, my attorney confirmed that I can put 'No' for both questions. By putting 'No', I am still answering both questions truthfully while not denying anything. I think you can't expunge/seal those charges because it's related to domestic violence unfortunately. I currently live in Florida as well. In your case, if your charges led to no convictions which sounds like it did since it was "disposed by prosecutor", I think you would be okay to put "No" for both questions. The background check/fingerprints however, will pull up those charges, and since it was not sealed/expunged, they will have access to everything and question it. They did mention on the application that if you had previous criminal history, to just be prepared to give information as the BON may want to schedule a meeting with you. At that point, I would just be honest with them. I don't know the circumstances of those charges, but the BON is specifically looking to see if you have changed as a person. 

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