Florida Supreme Court Issues Statewide Emergency Orders to Address COVID-19
On March 11, 2020, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Supreme Court of Florida issued its first “Administrative Order in Response to the Pandemic.” The Court directed all chief judges of district and circuit courts to take such mitigating measures as necessary to address the effects of COVID-19 on their respective courts, while keeping the courts open to the fullest extent consistent with public safety.
On March 13, 2020, the Supreme Court, in accordance with the declaration of a state of emergency in the State of Florida, issued an Order suspending grand jury proceedings, jury selection proceedings, and criminal and civil jury trials, as well as temporarily suspending procedural requirements and limitations that could hinder the efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 through March 27, 2020 or as provided by subsequent order. The Order further authorized each chief judge of each judicial circuit to establish temporary procedures for the use of communications equipment to conduct proceedings electronically.
Several District Courts of Appeals in the State of Florida have issued Orders that closely mirror or expand on the Supreme Court’s March 13 Order. On April 6, 2020, the Florida Supreme Court extended its Orders relating to the COVID-19 pandemic through close of business on May 29, 2020.
Consult with HGRS LLP Florida attorneys to determine the effect of these orders as it applies to your particular case. For example, in the First District Court of Appeals of Florida (Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, and Walton Counties), the Chief Judge suspended scheduling any trials in cases currently pending. However, Judges are conducting both evidentiary and non-evidentiary hearings via video or telephone conference.
This means that your case should not be delayed because of the pandemic. Our attorneys are continuing to advocate successfully for our clients via telephonic and videoconference court hearings, . For additional guidance, please contact our offices in Seagrove Beach and Destin, Florida.
Copies of the Applicable Orders are Provided below:
- Florida Supreme Court Administrative Order, AOSC20-12
- Florida Supreme Court Administrative Order, AOSC20-13
- Florida Supreme Court Administrative Order, AOSC20-23
For more information about Orders issued by Florida’s state courts, or about any of the new developments in employment-related laws as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, please refer to the HGRS LLP Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resource Center, at www.hgrslaw.com, or contact our firm at 850-213-0604.