FX Divisional Instructions

 


Family Law Division "FX"

E-mail address is: CAD-DivisionFX@pbcgov.org


Court Access

Judge Martz is available to provide the attorney's and the public with continuous access to the Family Court. The Court is conducting Special Set Hearings/Evidentiary Hearings/Non-Jury Trials/Domestic Violence Hearings/Contempt Hearings and Emergency Hearings IN PERSON. Please check back frequently as this is subject to change.

Zoom Meeting Information

EFFECTIVE TUESDAY, JANUARY 19, 2021, THE ZOOM LINK FOR DIVISION FX UMC HEARINGS AND PRO-SE UNCONTESTED DISSOLUTION MATTERS ONLY WILL BE THE SAME EVERYDAY. No password is required.

IT IS AS FOLLOWS:

Meeting Link: Zoom Link
Meeting ID: 882 6883 4109

Dial by your location:

  • US Toll-free 877-853-5257
  • US Toll-free 888-475-4499

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CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE - Certificates of Service with the language "ALL PARTIES" Is NO LONGER accepted in this Division. CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE SHALL LIST EACH PARTY SERVED.


Courtesy Copies of Documents Less than 10 Pages

Courtesy copies of documents less than 10 pages (ex.: motions, memorandum of law and legal authority) are be submitted to the Court for review in advance of all scheduled hearings 5 business days prior to the hearing. Judge Martz will review all motions, memorandum of law and legal authority prior to all hearings. Accordingly, all counsel/parties are to provide courtesy copies of their memoranda of law and supporting case law (only if all documents combined are ten (10) pages or less) to the Court via the following e-mail address: CAD-DivisionFX@pbcgov.org 5 business days prior to the scheduled hearing and designate the date and time of the hearing which they reference. Counsel/parties should highlight or otherwise mark the key language in the most pertinent and important cases and key exhibits for the court and opposing counsel. If the documents exceed ten (10) pages total, please send a courtesy hard copy only via US mail to the Court 5 business days  prior to the scheduled hearing. THIS COURT DOES NOT UTILIZE "E-COURTESY" Please do not submit any documents via "E-COURTESY."

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Case management conferences: 

Parties frequently request a case management conference. Prior to setting a request for case management conference on uniform motion calendar via OnLine System, the requesting party shall file a motion with all of the following identified by docket number when appropriate, and date of filing:

  1. Indicate the docket numbers of the controlling pleadings;
  2. Indicate the docket numbers of the responsive pleadings including any counter-petitions and answers;
  3. If post judgment, identify the docket numbers of the referral to the Magistrate, timely Objection, and Order regarding the Objection;
  4. Indicate the date mediation was attended AND what issues, if any, were resolved;
  5. Indicate the docket numbers of both parties' Financial Affidavits and dates filed;
  6. Indicate the docket numbers of both parties' social security numbers filed;
  7. Indicate the docket numbers of both parties Notice of compliance with Mandatory Disclosure;
  8. If children: indicate the docket numbers of each parties' certificate of completion of Parenting Course (NOTE: the person requesting case management MUST have completed course).
  9. The requesting party must have a telephone or zoom conference with the other party's counsel to discuss and include in the motion any outstanding motions that have been filed and requests to be heard prior to trial and all matters set forth in Family Rule of Procedure 12.200.
  10. Upon compliance of the above, counsel may coordinate a UMC via the OLS system and the Court will decide if additional case management conferences / pretrial conferences are required.

Online Scheduling is available for Uniform Motion Calendar (UMC)
and SPECIAL SET HEARINGS in Family Division "FX"

Online Services

Prior to first use, users must created an account in the Court's Online Services (current users can use their existing account.)

Judge Martz is available to provide the attorney's and the public with continuous access to the Family and Probate Court.  The Court is conducting in person hearings.

Family Division "FX" is now participating in On-Line Scheduling for Special Set Hearings thirty (30) minutes or less.

SPECIAL SET HEARINGS OF 45 MINUTES OR LONGER WILL CONTINUE TO BE SET BY THE JUDICIAL ASSISTANT.

Upload Orders Specially Setting Hearing, Motions, and Additional Attachments for the Court's review prior to the scheduled hearing through the on-line scheduling.  The court can only print documents that are ten (10) pages or less.  Any documents over the ten (10) page limit will have to be mailed hard copy only to the court for review three business days prior to the scheduled hearing THIS COURT DOES NOT UTILIZE "E-COURTESY" Please do not submit any documents via "E-COURTESY."

Email communications with the Judicial Assistant are limited to scheduling matters only. Ex-parte communications will not be considered.

All orders must be received through the Online Services system only in order for the court to electronically sign.

  • All orders must state a mailing address and e-mail address for each party being served and that have registered e-mail addresses with the Clerk of Court.
  • IF THE OPPOSING SIDE IS AN E-MAIL EXCUSED ATTORNEY OR A PRO SE party (unless pro se party has agreed to e-mail service) DO NOT SEND YOUR ORDER BY E-MAIL. A hard copy of the proposed order must be provided to the Court with sufficient self-addressed stamped envelopes provided to the Court for service.

All proposed orders are to be submitted to the court for review no later than 48 hours filling the hearing via OLS only

All proposed orders must be submitted through the OLS system. In the notes/comments section you MUST indicate whether it is one of the following utilizing one of the formats and exact language below:

  1. AGREED ORDER WITHOUT HEARING: [Name of Order / attached motion / agreement].
  2. ORDER AFTER HEARING: Parties agree to the order [Name of Order] accurately reflects the Court's ruling after the hearing on [DATE AND TIME OF HEARING].
  3. DISPUTED ORDER AFTER HEARING: Parties dispute the Court's ruling after hearing on [DATE AND TIME OF HEARING]. Attached is the transcript. The parties (attorneys and clients) understand the parties have a duty to attempt to resolve any conflicts and accurately set for the ruling made by the Court.
  4. FUTURE PROPOSED ORDER FOR HEARING ON [DATE AND TIME OF HEARING]. Wife/Husband's Proposed Order that has been provided to opposing counsel.
  5. THIS COURT DOES NOT UTILIZE "E-COURTESY" Please do not submit any documents via "E-COURTESY."

Uncontested Dissolutions of Marriage:

Uncontested Dissolutions of Marriage are being conducted in person and/or hybrid as parties can choose to appear both by zoom and in person. Parties appearing via Zoom must provide proper notice to all parties. The Courts static zoom link is listed above, Parties can upload the Final Judgment through OLS without the need for a hearing. The proposed final judgment must be submitted via OLS only in WORD format. Documents listed below must be attached to the proposed final judgment in PDF format:

Testimony at Final Hearing Form

The Final Disposition Form

Mediated Settlement Agreement (Only if it is to be merged with the Final Judgment)

Parenting Plan (Only if it is to be merged with the Final Judgment)

A copy of your client’s driver’s license - The driver's license issue date must be 6 months prior to the filing of the petition to establish Florida residency and establish identification of the petitioner and or respondent.

A cover letter needs to specify that all parties, pro se or opposing counsel, have reviewed the Final Judgment and have no objection. Also, if there are children involved, the Final Judgment needs to incorporate specifics on child support (i.e. how much, how it is to be paid, & how often.)**

Uncontested dissolutions of marriage hearings on the court's Uniform Motion Calendar without the documents listed above will not go forward and parties will be required to reset their hearing.

THIS COURT DOES NOT UTILIZE "E-COURTESY" Please do not submit any documents via "E-COURTESY."

Email communications with the Judicial Assistant are limited to scheduling matters only. Ex-parte communications will not be considered.

Uniform Motion Calendar Hearings (UMC) are now Scheduled Online

  • Tuesday & Thursday, 8:45 a.m. – 9:30 a.m., Wednesday, 3:30 p.m. - 4:15 p.m. in Courtroom 2. Scheduling is between the parties or pro se litigant. All UMC hearings are now scheduled online. You can check Judge Martz's Suspension Calendar. Parties will be heard on a first come, first serve basis.
  • Ten (10) minutes allotted (5 minutes per side)
  • No contested evidentiary hearings which includes default final hearings.
  • Uncontested final hearings in dissolution, paternity, name change and temporary custody cases will be heard during UMC.
  • Coordinated with opposing counsel or pro se litigant (UMC Hearings are scheduled online, and do not need to be scheduled with the Judicial Assistant).
  • With five (5) business days notice to opposing counsel or pro se litigant (unless short notice agreed by parties).
  • Judge Martz will review all motions scheduled for UMC prior to the hearing on-line.
  • Pro se litigants may provide courtesy copies of their UMC motions and notices of hearing to the Court via regular mail.
  • Counsel must upload all proposed orders for the Court's electronic signature 48 hours following the hearing via OLS.
  • Email communications with the Judicial Assistant are limited to scheduling matters only. Ex-parte communications will not be considered.

If you resolve your motion prior to the UMC hearing date, please cancel your scheduled hearing by going on-line and submit a courtesy copy of the e-filed Notice of Cancellation to CAD-DivisionFX@pbcgov.org .

Family - Service and Preparation of Orders

  • Family Division "FX" Final Judgments and Orders received by e-mail will be e-filed to all parties that have registered e-mail addresses with the Clerk of Court.
  • Family Division "FX" Final Judgments and Orders received by mail will be mailed out if additional copies of the order and self-addressed stamped envelopes are provided.
  • Administrative Order 5.204 requires that some portion of text of the Order be included on signature page.
  • Proposed Final Judgments and/or Orders are to be uploaded to the OLS system 48 hours following the hearing.
  • Proposed orders should include a cover letter specifying the date that the hearing was heard.

Uncontested Dissolutions of Marriage

  • Can be heard at UMC (follow UMC rules above)
  • Testimony at Final Hearing and Final Disposition forms must be completed (available on the 15th Judicial Circuit Website)
  • Confirm notice required by Fla. Fam. L.R.P. 12.440 and Fla. Stat. §61.19
  • Bring proof of residency Fla. Stat. §61.052(2)
  • Verify all documents necessary are in court file (Fla. Stat. §§61.052(7), (8); 61.21(4); Fla. Fam. L.R.P. 12.285(d)(j)
  • Bring Income Withholding Order, if needed. 

The proposed final judgment must be submitted via OLS only in WORD format. Documents listed below must be attached to the proposed final judgment in PDF format:

Testimony at Final Hearing Form

The Final Disposition Form

Mediated Settlement Agreement (Only if it is to be merged with the Final Judgment)

Parenting Plan (Only if it is to be merged with the Final Judgment)

A copy of your client’s driver’s license - The driver's license issue date must be 6 months prior to the filing of the petition to establish Florida residency and establish identification of the petitioner and or respondent.

A cover letter needs to specify that all parties, pro se or opposing counsel, have reviewed the Final Judgment and have no objection. Also, if there are children involved, the Final Judgment needs to incorporate specifics on child support (i.e. how much, how it is to be paid, & how often.)**

THIS COURT DOES NOT UTILIZE "E-COURTESY" Please do not submit any documents via "E-COURTESY."

Email communications with the Judicial Assistant are limited to scheduling matters only. Ex-parte communications will not be considered.

Uncontested dissolutions of marriage hearings on the court's Uniform Motion Calendar without the documents listed above will not go forward and parties will be required to reset their hearing.

Domestic Violence Hearings

No Domestic Violence matters may be set on the Uniform Motion Calendar. All motions are to be filed with the Clerk in the Domestic Violence Division. The motion will be forwarded to the Judge for review. The Judicial Assistant cannot cancel or change hearings. Domestic Violence Hearings are in person. For questions regarding domestic violence matters you need to contact the Domestic Violence Division at 561-274-1541 or 561-274-1591.

Special Set Hearings of thirty (30) minutes are now scheduled on-line.  Hearings 45 minutes or longer are scheduled with the Judicial Assistant.

  • Motions must be filed and docketed with clerk before hearing dates can be given or a hearing can be set.
  • Person requesting the hearing must confirm availability with opposing counsel or pro se litigant before setting the hearing. 
  • IF the opposing counsel or Pro-Se litigant is NOT available on the dates provided by the moving party then the Opposing Counsel not the moving party shall be responsible for obtaining new dates from the Judicial Assistant ASAP. Please contact the Court's judicial assistant for hearing time one (1) hour or longer. Upon coordinating the hearing send a proposed Order Specially Setting Hearing in Word format (See Divisional Forms and Orders) for Judge Martz's signature via OLS Thereafter, the Judicial Assistant will e-file the signed Order on Special Set Hearing to all counsel/parties. Alternatively, pro se parties may contact Judicial Assistant, Sabrina Valdez, to schedule a special set hearing by telephone at 561-330-1785.
  • Special set hearings are set by Court order and cannot be cancelled except by further order of the Court unless the matter is settled (with an agreed order presented to Court) or withdrawn.
  • If the hearing is evidentiary, that must be noted on the proposed Order on Special Set Hearing.
  • Failure to comply with these procedures will result in cancellation of your hearing by the Court.

Accordingly, all counsel/parties should provide courtesy copies of their special set motions, memoranda of law and supporting case law (only if all documents combined are ten (10) pages or less) to the Court via the following e-mail address: CAD-DivisionFX@pbcgov.org, 5 business days prior to the scheduled hearing and designate the date and time of the hearing which they reference. Counsel/parties should highlight or otherwise mark the key language in the most pertinent and important cases and key exhibits for the court and opposing counsel. If the documents exceed ten (10) pages total, please send a courtesy hard copies via US mail to the Court 5 business days  prior to the scheduled hearing.

THIS COURT DOES NOT UTILIZE "E-COURTESY" Please do not submit any documents via "E-COURTESY."

Email communications with the Judicial Assistant are limited to scheduling matters only. Ex-parte communications will not be considered.

Temporary Relief Hearings

  • Mediation ON THE TEMPORARY RELIEF SOUGHT (following the filing of the motion for temporary relief) must be held before a temporary relief hearing will be scheduled Administrative Order 5.207.
  • Following mediation, if parties are unable to reach an agreement, temporary relief hearings may be set by contacting the Court's judicial assistant.
  • Hearings are limited to a total of thirty (30) minutes. Administrative Order 5.207
  • Follow instructions for Special Set Hearings

All proposed orders are to be submitted to the court for review no later than 48 hours following the hearing via OLS.

THIS COURT DOES NOT UTILIZE "E-COURTESY" Please do not submit any documents via "E-COURTESY."

Email communications with the Judicial Assistant are limited to scheduling matters only. Ex-parte communications will not be considered.

Emergency Motions

Motions for Emergency Hearing should be filed with the Clerk's eportal and then click the Emergency Filing box that states, "Check This Box to Specify That This is an Emergency Filing." Courtesy copies of Emergency Motions may be emailed to CAD-DivisionFX@pbcgov.org. Judge& Martz will review the Emergency Motion and email any Order(s) on the Emergency Motion to all counsel of record.

Post Judgment Matters

Modifications, Motions for Contempt and/or Enforcement of Final Judgment.

Effective immediately: On all Orders of Referral to a General Magistrate, please enter the appropriate Magistrate's hearing room number, under the case number. Each Order of Referral may only refer one matter per Order of Referral. Therefore, if you have three motions, I will need three separate Order of Referral per motion. The following rooms are associated with the following Magistrates: Peter Bassaline = Hearing Room "C" and Thomas R. Baker = Hearing Room "D"

All post judgment modifications, motions for contempt and/or enforcement of final judgment MUST be referred to the Magistrate. The attorneys/parties are responsible for providing the Order of Referral to Magistrate. (EXCEPT that all child support post-judgment matters must be heard by the Magistrate - Do not do an Order of Referral for post-judgment child support matters). See Administrative Order 5.104, Fla. R. Fam. P. 12.490 and Fla. R. Fam. P. 12.491.

Post judgment matters shall be referred to the Magistrates, as follows:

  • Magistrate Kirigin
  • Attorney or pro se litigant should send the proper 15th Judicial Circuit Order of Referral to Magistrate to the Judge.
  • Attorney or pro se litigant may file an objection to the referral
  • After an Order Sustaining Objection is docketed, Attorney should set the hearing via the Division FX online calendar (Administrative Order 5.206 and submit a courtesy copy of the notice with a copy of the pleading and order sustaining the objection to the judge's office.

Notice/Motion to Set Cause For Trial

  • Original notice/motion to set cause for trial filed with Clerk's office.
  • Please adhere to all instructions in Administrative Order 5.209.
  • Judge must receive a courtesy copy of the notice for trial.
  • In cases where one side is represented by an attorney and the other side is pro se, the notice shall contain the e-mail address for the attorney and the physical street address for the pro se party. Submit the notice with a self-addressed stamped envelope stapled to the Notice for Trial for the pro se, and the trial order will be served via judicial e-service to the attorney and by U.S. Mail to the pro se party.
  • Notices must include specific motion or petition/counter petition to be tried and the estimate of time necessary for trial.
  • You may obtain a trial date before completing mediation, but you must complete mediation prior to trial.
  • The original notice must be filed with the Clerk. A courtesy copy should be e-mailed to CAD-DivisionFX@pbcgov.org. Trial Orders are served via e-mail to all parties registered for e-service.
  • Continuances of trial require a hearing on Uniform Motion Calendar. CAUTION: Do not notice your case for trial unless both sides agree the case is trial ready. Continuances will only be granted in cases of emergency.
  • Any party seeking to exclude expert testimony under a Daubert analysis pursuant to F.S. 90.702 shall file a motion with the court specifically identifying the basis for the Daubert challenge. All Daubert motions shall be scheduled and heard prior to the commencement of the trial.
  • THIS COURT DOES NOT UTILIZE "E-COURTESY" Please do not submit any documents via "E-COURTESY."
  • Email communications with the Judicial Assistant are limited to scheduling matters only. Ex-parte communications will not be considered.

Adoptions and Name Changes

  • All adoption and name change statutory requirements must be met before a final hearing will be set. TPR or Final Hearing requests must be put in writing to the Judge and are set by the Judicial Assistant once all requirements have been met
  • Staff Attorneys review all adoptions and name changes (No hearings will be set until reviewed by Staff Attorney)
  • A status order from the Court may be issued to the parties
  • Following all requirements being met by the parties, the Judicial Assistant will contact the attorney/party(ies) to schedule a final hearing.
  • An uncontested TPR may be heard at the end of a Uniform Motion Calendar, time permitting. If you have any questions regarding your adoption case, send an e-mail to: southcountyadoptions@pbcgov.org