The Florida Supreme Court, on its own motion, updated the Rules of Judicial Administration to better react to unexpected circumstances such as those facing the courts right now. The courts, from the Florida Supreme Court, down to the local circuit courts have done an amazing job. As Floridians, we’re used to preparing for hurricanes, but none of us have experienced the changes that have occurred over the past few months. Our judges are certainly doing their part to get us through this. They, along with their staff and all who support them in their work, are quietly getting the job done.
The amendment inserts a new subdivision (a)(2)(B)(v) into Rule 2.205 and renumbers the subsequent subdivisions:
(v) the power, upon request of the chief judge of any circuit or district, or sua sponte, in the event of a public health emergency that requires mitigation of the effects of the emergency on the courts and court participants, to enter such order or orders as may be appropriate: to suspend, extend, toll, or otherwise change time deadlines or standards, including, without limitation, those affecting speedy trial procedures in criminal and juvenile proceedings; suspend the application of or modify other requirements or limitations imposed by rules of procedure, court orders, and opinions, including, without limitation, those governing the use of communication equipment and proceedings conducted by remote electronic means; and authorize temporary implementation of procedures and other measures, including, without limitation, the suspension or continuation of civil and criminal jury trials and grand jury proceedings, which procedures or measures may be inconsistent with applicable requirements, to address the emergency situation or public necessity.
The full text of the opinion can be found here: