FL – Search Florida Arrest Records

Florida arrest records are valuable sources of information for various purposes, such as background checks, legal proceedings, or personal research. It’s crucial to understand how to access these records and the nuances associated with them. In this article, we will explore the different ways to search for Florida arrest records, their limitations, and important considerations when interpreting them.

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Accessing Florida Arrest Records

There are several methods to access Florida arrest records:

Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE): The FDLE maintains a comprehensive database of all arrests made in the state since January 1, 1995. To access this database, you can visit their website or submit a public records request.
Local County Sheriff’s Offices: Each county sheriff’s office in Florida maintains its own database of arrest records. You can access these records by visiting their respective websites or submitting a public records request.
Private Background Check Companies: Numerous private companies offer background check services, which may include arrest records. However, these services typically require a fee.

Understanding Arrest Records

It’s important to note that an arrest record is not synonymous with a conviction record. An arrest merely indicates that an individual has been accused of a crime; it does not signify guilt. Here are some crucial points to consider when dealing with arrest records:

Sealed or Expunged Records: Some arrest records may be sealed or expunged, rendering them inaccessible to the public. Records can be sealed or expunged for various reasons, including dropped charges or a finding of not guilty.
Completeness and Accuracy: Arrest records may not always be complete or up-to-date. To verify their accuracy, it’s advisable to contact the law enforcement agency responsible for the arrest.
Limited Reliability: An arrest record should not be the sole basis for assessing a person’s character or criminal history. It is essential to consider all available facts and exercise caution before drawing conclusions based solely on arrest records.

How to Access Someone’s Criminal Charges or Records in Florida

If you need to ascertain whether someone has a criminal record in Florida, you can utilize the State of Florida Criminal History Information website, managed by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). Follow these steps:

Access the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Website: Visit the Florida Department of Law Enforcement website.
Navigate to “Florida Criminal History Record Check”: On the website, locate and click on the section labeled “Florida Criminal History Record Check.”
Florida Department of Law Enforcement website screenshot explaining how to perform a Florida criminal history records check with links to livescan options.(Source: Florida Department of Law Enforcement)

Records in Florida

The website provides three search options:

Instant Search:

  • This option provides immediate results.
  • Each search costs a total of $25.00, which includes a $24.00 fee per search and a $1.00 processing fee payable by credit or debit card.

Certified/Non-Certified Search:

  • For this option, you need to furnish FDLE staff with the individual’s demographic information.
  • The FDLE staff will conduct the search, with results typically available in approximately five days for non-certified searches and about a week for certified searches.
  • Similar to the Instant Search, this service is priced at $25.00.

ORI (Originating Agency Identification) Search:

  • The cost for an ORI Search varies depending on the recipient of the results, such as an authorized party or a state agency.
  • Users of this service are required to possess an ORI before accessing public criminal records.

For inquiries specific to the system or any questions related to FDLE’s Criminal History Services, you can reach out to them using the following contact information:

By following these steps and utilizing the available search options, you can access the criminal charges or records of individuals in Florida through the official channels provided by the FDLE.


What Are Florida Arrest Records?

Florida arrest records are official documents maintained by law enforcement agencies in the state of Florida. These records contain information about individuals who have been arrested and charged with a crime within the state. They typically include details such as the person's name, mugshot, arrest date, charges filed, and other relevant information related to the arrest.

How Can I Access Florida Arrest Records?

Accessing Florida arrest records can be done through several methods. One common way is to request them from the law enforcement agency that made the arrest. You can also search for these records online through various public databases or request them from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) through their official website. Keep in mind that some information may be restricted or require authorization for access.

Are Florida Arrest Records Public Information?

Yes, Florida arrest records are considered public information under the state's public records laws. This means that in most cases, they can be accessed by the general public. However, there may be certain exceptions and restrictions, such as juvenile arrest records or records that are sealed or expunged, which may not be accessible to everyone.

Can I Use Florida Arrest Records for Employment Background Checks?

Employers in Florida are allowed to use arrest records as part of their background check process, but there are strict guidelines and regulations in place to protect applicants' rights. Employers should be cautious and ensure that their use of arrest records complies with state and federal laws, such as the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).

How Can I Understand the Information in Florida Arrest Records?

Understanding Florida arrest records can be complex due to the legal terminology and codes used. It's advisable to seek legal counsel or consult with professionals who specialize in criminal records interpretation if you have difficulty comprehending the information. Additionally, you can find online resources and guides to help you decipher the details within these records accurately.