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Part I Fla. R. Jud. Admin. Download

Florida Rules of Judicial Administration
Part I
General Provisions

RULE 2.110 | SCOPE AND PURPOSE

These rules, cited as “Florida Rules of Judicial Administration” and abbreviated as “Fla. R. Jud. Admin.,” shall take effect at 12:01 a.m. on July 1, 1979. They shall apply to administrative matters in all courts to which the rules are applicable by their terms. The rules shall be construed to secure the speedy and inexpensive determination of every proceeding to which they are applicable. These rules shall supersede all conflicting rules and statutes.

RULE 2.120 | DEFINITIONS

The following terms have the meanings shown as used in these rules:

(a) Court Rule:A rule of practice or procedure adopted to facilitate the uniform conduct of litigation applicable to all proceedings, all parties, and all attorneys.

(b) Local Court Rule:
(1) A rule of practice or procedure for circuit or county application only that, because of local conditions, supplies an omission in or facilitates application of a rule of statewide application and does not conflict therewith.
(2) A rule that addresses other matters that are required by the Florida Constitution, general law, rules of court, or a supreme court opinion to be adopted by or in a local rule.
(c) Administrative Order:A directive necessary to administer properly the court’s affairs but not inconsistent with the constitution or with court rules and administrative orders entered by the supreme court.

RULE 2.130 | PRIORITY OF FLORIDA RULES OF APPELLATE PROCEDURE

The Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure shall control all proceedings in the supreme court and the district courts, and all proceedings in which the circuit courts exercise their appellate jurisdiction, notwithstanding any conflicting rules of procedure.

RULE 2.140 | AMENDING RULE OF COURT

(a) Amendments Generally. The following procedure shall be followed for consideration of rule amendments generally other than those adopted under subdivisions (d), (e), (f), and (g):

(1) Proposals for court rules, amendments to them, or abrogation of them may be made by any person.
(2) Proposals shall be submitted to the clerk of the supreme court, the committee chair(s) of a Florida Bar committee listed in subdivision (a)(3), or the Bar staff liaison of The Florida Bar in writing and shall include a general description of the proposed rule change or a specified proposed change in content. The clerk of the supreme court shall refer proposals to the appropriate committee under subdivision (a)(3).
(3) The Florida Bar shall appoint the following committees to consider rule proposals: Civil Procedure Rules Committee, Criminal Procedure Rules Committee, Small Claims Rules Committee, Traffic Court Rules Committee, Appellate Court Rules Committee, Juvenile Court Rules Committee, Code and Rules of Evidence Committee, Rules of Judicial Administration Committee, Probate Rules Committee, and Family Law Rules Committee.
(4) Each committee shall be composed of attorneys and judges with extensive experience and training in the committee’s area of concentration. Members of the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee shall also have previous rules committee experience or substantial experience in the administration of the Florida court system. The chair of each rules committee shall appoint one of its members to the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee to serve as a regular member of the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee to facilitate and implement routine periodic reporting by and to the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee on the development and progress of rule proposals under consideration and their potential impact on other existing or proposed rules. The members of each rules committee shall serve for 3-year staggered terms, except members appointed by a rules committee chair to the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee who shall serve at the pleasure of the respective rules committee chairs. The president-elect of The Florida Bar shall appoint sitting members of each rules committee to serve as chair(s) and vice chair(s) for each successive year.
(5) The rules committees may originate proposals and shall regularly review and reevaluate the rules to advance orderly and inexpensive procedures for the administration of justice. The committees shall consider and vote on each proposal. The rules committees may accept or reject proposed amendments or may amend proposals. The rules committees shall prepare meeting agendas and minutes reflecting the status of rules proposals under consideration and actions taken. Copies of the minutes shall be furnished to the clerk of the supreme court, to the board of governors of The Florida Bar, and to the proponent of any proposal considered at the meeting. Each rules committee shall furnish promptly and timely to every other rules committee all meeting agendas and all minutes or other record of action taken.
(6) The Rules of Judicial Administration Committee shall serve as the central rules coordinating committee. All committees shall provide a copy of any proposed rules changes to the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee within 30 days of a committee’s affirmative vote to recommend the proposed change to the supreme court. The Rules of Judicial Administration Committee shall then refer all proposed rules changes to those rules committees that might be affected by the proposed change.
(7) Whenever the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee receives a request to coordinate the submission of a single comprehensive report of proposed rule amendments on behalf of multiple rules committees, the general procedure shall be as follows:
(A) The subcommittee chairs handling the matter for each committee will constitute an ad hoc committee to discuss the various committees’ recommendations and to formulate time frames for the joint response. The chair of the ad hoc committee will be the assigned Rules of Judicial Administration Committee subcommittee chair.
(B) At the conclusion of the work of the ad hoc committee, a proposed joint response will be prepared by the ad hoc committee and distributed to the committee chairs for each committee’s review and final comments.
(C) The Rules of Judicial Administration Committee shall be responsible for filing the comprehensive final report.

(b) Schedule for Regular-Cycle Rules Proposals.
(1) Each committee shall report all proposed rule changes on a staggered basis (with the first cycle starting in 2006). Reports shall be made by the Criminal Procedure Rules Committee, the Traffic Court Rules Committee, and the Juvenile Court Rules Committee in 2006; by the Civil Procedure Rules Committee, the Probate Rules Committee, the Small Claims Rules Committee, and the Code and Rules of Evidence Committee in 2007; and by the Family Law Rules Committee, the Appellate Court Rules Committee, and the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee in 2008. Thereafter, the cycle shall repeat.
(2) No later than June 15 of the year prior to each reporting year or such other date as the board of governors of The Florida Bar may set, each reporting committee shall submit all proposed rule changes to the board of governors with the committee’s final numerical voting record on each proposal. Contemporaneously with reporting proposed rule changes to the board of governors, each committee report shall be furnished to the Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, the President of the Florida Senate, and the chairs of the House and Senate committees as designated by the Speaker and the President, and published on the website of The Florida Bar and in The Florida Bar News. Any person desiring to comment upon proposed rule changes shall submit written comments to the appropriate committee chair(s) no later than August 1 of the year prior to each reporting year. Each committee shall consider any comments submitted and thereafter report to the board of governors, no later than October 31 of the year prior to each reporting year, any revisions to the proposed rule changes. Contemporaneously with reporting any revisions to the board of governors, each committee’s revised proposed rule changes shall be furnished to the Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, the President of the Florida Senate, and the chairs of the House and Senate committees as designated by the Speaker and the President, and published on the website of The Florida Bar and in The Florida Bar News. Any person desiring to comment thereafter shall submit written comments to the supreme court in accordance with subdivision (b)(6).
(3) No later than December 15 of the year prior to each reporting year, the board of governors shall consider the proposals and shall vote on each proposal to recommend acceptance, rejection, or amendment.
(4) No later than February 1 of each reporting year, each committee and the executive director of The Florida Bar shall file a report of its proposed rule changes with the supreme court. Each committee may amend its recommendations to coincide with the recommendations of the board of governors or may decline to do so or may amend its recommendations in another manner. Any such amendments shall also be reported to the supreme court. The report and proposed rule changes must conform to the Guidelines for Rules Submissions approved by administrative order and posted on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar. Consistent with the requirements that are fully set forth in the Guidelines, the report shall include:
(A) a list of the proposed changes, together with a detailed explanation of each proposal that includes a narrative description of how each amendment changes the language of the rule and a thorough discussion of the reason for each change;
(B) the final numerical voting record of the proposals in the committee;
(C) the name and address of the proponent of each change, if other than a member of the rules committee;
(D) a report of the action taken by the committee on comments submitted in accordance with subdivision (b)(2);
(E) a report of the action and voting record of the board of governors;
(F) any dissenting views of the committee and, if available, of the board; and
(G) an appendix containing all comments submitted to the committee, all relevant background documents, the proposed amendments in legislative format, and a two-column chart setting forth the proposed changes in legislative format in the left column and a brief summary of the explanation of each change given in the report in the right column.
The report and the proposed rule changes shall be filed with the supreme court in an electronic format approved by the supreme court.

(5) If oral argument is deemed necessary, the supreme court shall establish a date in the month of June of each reporting year for oral argument on the proposals. Notice of the oral argument on the proposals and a copy of the proposals shall be furnished to the affected committee chair(s) and vice chair(s), the executive director and staff liaison of The Florida Bar, all members of the Judicial Management Council, the clerk and chief judge of each district court of appeal, the clerk and chief judge of each judicial circuit, the Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, the President of the Florida Senate, the chairs of the House and Senate committees as designated by the Speaker and the President, and any person who has asked in writing filed with the clerk of the supreme court for a copy of the notice. The clerk may provide the notice electronically. The recommendations or a resume of them shall be published on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar and in The Florida Bar News before the oral argument or consideration of the proposals without oral argument. Notice of the oral argument, if scheduled, shall also be published on the website of the supreme court.
(6) Within the time allowed for comments set by the supreme court, any person may file comments concerning the proposals. All comments and other submissions by interested persons shall be filed with the clerk of the supreme court and served on the chair(s) of the appropriate rules committee, the Bar staff liaison, and on the proponent of the rule change if other than a member of the rules committee. The chair(s) of the rules committee and the executive director of The Florida Bar shall file a response to all comments within the time period set by the court. All comments and other submissions regarding the rule change proposals shall be filed in an approved electronic format with the supreme court. As soon as practicable after the date of filing, the clerk of the supreme court shall publish on the website of the supreme court all comments and the responses of the chair(s) of the rules committee that have been filed concerning the rule change proposals. All requests or submissions by a rules committee made in connection with a pending rule change proposal shall be filed with the clerk of the supreme court and thereafter published by the clerk of the supreme court on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar.
(7) Opinions adopting the proposals should be issued in sufficient time for the rule changes to take effect on January 1 of the year following the reporting year. The supreme court may permit motions for rehearing to be filed on behalf of any person who filed a comment, The Florida Bar, any bar association, and the affected committee.

(c) Rejected Proposals. If a committee rejects a proposal, the proponent may submit the proposed rule to the board of governors and shall notify the chair(s) and vice chair(s) of the affected committee of the submission of the proposed rule to the board of governors. Minority reports of committees are allowed and may be submitted to both the board of governors and the supreme court.

(d) Emergency Amendments by Court. The supreme court, with or without notice, may change court rules at any time if an emergency exists that does not permit reference to the appropriate committee of The Florida Bar for recommendations. The rule changes must conform to the Guidelines for Rules Submissions approved by administrative order and posted on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar. The change may become effective immediately or at a future time. In either event, the court shall give notice of and fix a date for further consideration of the change. Any person may file comments concerning the change, seeking its abrogation or a delay in the effective date, in accordance with the procedures set forth in subdivision (b)(6). The court may allow oral argument in support of such comments by The Florida Bar, by its sections and committees, and by other bar associations. Notice of the oral argument, if scheduled, on the change and a copy of the change shall be furnished to the affected committee chair(s) and vice chair(s), the executive director and staff liaison of The Florida Bar, all members of the Judicial Management Council, the clerk and chief judge of each district court of appeal, the clerk and chief judge of each judicial circuit, the Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, the President of the Florida Senate, the chairs of the House and Senate committees as designated by the Speaker and the President, and any person who has asked in writing filed with the clerk of the supreme court for a copy of the notice. The clerk may provide the notice electronically. Notice of the change shall be published on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar, and in The Florida Bar News either before or after the change is adopted. Notice of the oral argument, if scheduled, shall also be published on the website of the supreme court.

(e) Out-of-Cycle Committee Proposals.
(1) Emergency Proposals and Proposals in Response to Legislative Changes. If, in the opinion of a committee, a proposal is of an emergency nature or a rule amendment is necessary due to changes in legislation, and the board of governors concurs, proposals may be made at any time to the supreme court. The report and proposed rule changes may be filed without prior publication for comment and must conform to the Guidelines for Rules Submissions approved by administrative order and posted on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar. The rules committees’ fast-track procedures shall be used to address legislative changes to ensure that any resulting proposed rule amendments are filed with and can be adopted by the court before or soon after the effective date of the legislation. If the court agrees that an emergency exists or a rule change is necessary due to a legislative change, the court may publish the rule amendment for comment after adopting it or may set a time for oral argument or for consideration of the proposal without oral argument. Notice of the oral argument on the proposals, if scheduled before or after adoption, and a copy of the proposals shall be furnished to the affected committee chair(s) and vice chair(s), the executive director and the staff liaison of The Florida Bar, all members of the Judicial Management Council, the clerk and chief judge of each district court of appeal, the clerk and chief judge of each judicial circuit, the Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, the President of the Florida Senate, the chairs of the House and Senate committees as designated by the Speaker and the President, and any person who has asked in writing filed with the clerk of the supreme court for a copy of the notice. The clerk may provide the notice electronically. Prior to or after their adoption, the recommendations or a resume of them shall be published on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar, and in The Florida Bar News. Any person may file comments concerning the changes, in accordance with the procedures set forth in subdivision (b)(6). Notice of the oral argument, if scheduled, shall also be published on the website of the supreme court.
(2) Non-Emergency Out-of-Cycle Proposals. If, in the opinion of a committee, a proposal is not of an emergency nature, but is sufficiently necessary to the administration of justice that it should not wait until the next regular-cycle submission, and the board of governors concurs, proposals may be made out-of-cycle at any time to the supreme court. The report and proposed rule changes must conform to the Guidelines for Rules Submissions approved by administrative order and posted on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar. Such out-of-cycle submissions must be published in The Florida Bar News and posted on the website of The Florida Bar for comment, and such comment must be reviewed and addressed by the committee prior to the out-of-cycle rule submission to the board of governors to recommend acceptance, rejection, or amendment. If the supreme court agrees that a proposal should be addressed before the next regular-cycle report, the supreme court may set a time for oral argument or for consideration of the proposal without oral argument. Notice of the oral argument on the proposals, if scheduled, and a copy of the proposals shall be furnished to the affected committee chair(s) and vice chair(s), the executive director and the staff liaison of The Florida Bar, all members of the Judicial Management Council, the clerk and chief judge of each district court of appeal, the clerk and chief judge of each judicial circuit, the Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, the President of the Florida Senate, the chairs of the House and Senate committees as designated by the Speaker and the President, the person who initially proposed the matter to the committee, and any person who has asked in writing filed with the clerk of the supreme court for a copy of the notice. The clerk may provide the notice electronically. The recommendations or a resume of them shall be published on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar, and in The Florida Bar News for comment before the oral argument or consideration of the proposals without oral argument. Any person may file comments concerning the proposals, in accordance with the procedures set forth in subdivision (b)(6). Notice of the oral argument, if scheduled, shall also be published on the website of the supreme court.
(f) Request by Court. The supreme court may direct special consideration of a proposal at times other than those specified in this rule and may require a committee to report its recommendation with the recommendations of the board of governors. All requests or submissions by a rules committee made in connection with a request under this subdivision shall be filed with or submitted to the clerk of the supreme court as provided in this subdivision.
(1) Recommended Rule Changes. A rule change recommended in response to a request under this subdivision shall be included in the rules committee’s next regular-cycle report filed under subdivision (b), unless the court directs or the committee determines and the board of governors agrees that the rule change should be submitted out of cycle. If the committee submits a recommended change out of cycle, the procedures for out-of-cycle rule proposals under subdivision (e) shall apply, except the report shall state that it is filed in response to a request by the court under this subdivision.
(2) No Action Recommendations. If the court refers a matter to a rules committee for consideration only and does not direct the committee to propose a rule change, and after considering the matter referred the committee determines that no rule change is warranted, the committee shall submit a “no action report” to the court explaining its recommendation that no rule change is needed. A no action recommendation should not be included in a report proposing rule changes filed under any other subdivision of this rule. After the court considers the recommendation, the clerk shall notify the rules committee chair(s) and the executive director and the staff liaison of The Florida Bar whether any further action is required of the committee.

(g) Amendments to the Rules of Judicial Administration.

(1) Amendments Without Referral to Rules Committee. Changes to the Rules of Judicial Administration contained in Part II, State Court Administration, of these rules, and rules 2.310, and 2.320, contained in Part III, Judicial Officers, generally will be considered and adopted by the supreme court without reference to or proposal from the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee. The supreme court may amend rules under this subdivision at any time, with or without notice. If a change is made without notice, the court shall fix a date for future consideration of the change and the change shall be published on the websites of the supreme court and The Florida Bar, and in The Florida Bar News. Any person may file comments concerning the change, in accordance with the procedures set forth in subdivision (b)(6). The court may hear oral argument on the change. Notice of the oral argument on the change, if scheduled, and a copy of the change shall be provided in accordance with subdivision (d).
(2) Other Amendments. Amendments to all other Rules of Judicial Administration shall be referred to or proposed by the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee and adopted by the supreme court as provided in subdivisions (a), (b), (c), (d), (e), and (f).
(h) Local Rules Proposed by Trial Courts. The foregoing procedure shall not apply to local rules proposed by a majority of circuit and county judges in the circuit. The chief justice of the supreme court may appoint a Local Rule Advisory Committee to consider and make recommendations to the court concerning local rules and administrative orders submitted pursuant to rule 2.215(e).

Committee Notes

1980 Amendment. Rule 2.130 [renumbered as 2.140 in 2006] is entirely rewritten to codify the procedures for changes to all Florida rules of procedure as set forth by this court in In re Rules of Court: Procedure for Consideration of Proposals Concerning Practice and Procedure, 276 So.2d 467 (Fla.1972), and to update those procedures based on current practice. The Supreme Court Rules Advisory Committee has been abolished, and the Local Rules Advisory Committee has been established.

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