RD Divisional News

COVID-19 UPDATE November 2020

Pursuant to Supreme Court and Local Administrative Order, AOSC20-12, AOSC 20-23, and AO 12.510, all non-essential in person proceeding are hereby suspended. Effective March 17, 2020, the Supreme Court has prohibited any in-person hearings except for essential and critical trial court proceedings. Hearings in the County Civil division do not qualify as essential or critical. Therefore, all in-person hearings in Division RD are suspended and will be handled through remote means.

During the current state of emergency, motions to appear telephonically are not necessary.

Small Claim Pretrials

Small Claim Pretrial Conferences will be held telephonically for all served cases until further notice. If the Defendant in a Small Claim case has not been served or proof of service is not timely filed, the Pretrial Conference will be cancelled and an order directing Plaintiff to contact the Clerk of Court will be entered. If proof of service is not filed timely, Plaintiff should submit the appropriate motion to have the Pretrial Conference reset.

Space is limited for these dockets and some cases will need new event dates or event times. Parties will be notified through Court Order via e-service or by US Mail to the address information within the case file. Orders on these events will contain updated dates, times, and instructions for accessing the Zoom meeting.

PIP Pretrials

PIP Pretrial Conference scheduled at 9:30AM will be going forward via Zoom. All parties shall sign in/dial in using the conference call information located on the 15th Judicial Circuit PIP webpage. We encourage parties to submit stipulations and waivers timely.

UMC Hearings

All UMC events will be held via Zoom conference meeting until further notice. As of July 1, Division RD will be using the same Zoom meeting ID and Password for all UMC sessions. If you do not receive this information when setting your case in OLS, please contact the JA at CAD-DivisionRD@pbcgov.org so that it can be included in the Notice of Hearing.

If parties object to the use of a group Zoom conference for UMC, they are encouraged to set their event during any special set time available in the 15th Circuit OLS and provide the Court with the details for electronic appearance on the Notice of Hearing filed.

Any parties who resolve issues previously set on UMC must cancel the event and may submit proposed orders to the Court via Online Scheduling.

Special Set Hearings

All special set hearings will be conducted electronically and should be set through the 15th Circuit Online Scheduling. Please note: parties can now schedule 15, 30, 45 and 60-minute hearings without emailing the Judicial Assistant for dates and times.

The Moving Party shall be responsible for coordinating the conference between parties and scheduling the event; contacting the Court at CAD-DivisionRD@pbcgov.org for Zoom conferencing details for the event and entering the Zoom conferencing information in the Notice of Hearing. At least 48 hours before the scheduled hearing send a courtesy notice to CAD-DivisionRD@pbcgov.org confirming the hearing and a list of all motions to be heard. Please keep in mind that telephonic hearings take longer than in-person hearings, please be patient and wait on the line until the Court joins the call.

If parties object to the use of a group Zoom conference, they are encouraged to set their event in the 15th Circuit OLS, contact the Court at CAD-DivisionRD@pbcgov.org to state the objection to Zoom and provide the Court with the details for electronic appearance on the Notice of Hearing filed.

Until further notice remote hearings are mandatory. Per AO12.510 III.(1) continuing a proceeding because of a desire to conduct an in-person hearing is not a valid reason unless the specific detailed criteria are met.

For evidentiary hearings and trials: Before the hearing and/or trial can go forward, the parties are requested to stipulate to the admissibility of evidence to the greatest extent possible. All parties must exchange evidence no later than forty-eight (48) hours in advance of the hearing/trial (if not already exchanged pursuant to the pre-trial order), and email a courtesy copy to CAD-DivisionRD@pbcgov.org. Any party objecting to the admission of evidence shall file their specific objections and basis for same and send a courtesy copy to CAD-DivisionRD@pbcgov.org. Oaths for witnesses shall be administered remotely in accordance with Supreme Court Administrative Order AOSC20-16.

Any parties who resolve issues previously set for hearing may submit proposed orders in Word format to the Court via Online Scheduling.

Evictions

There are several limitations on Evictions at this time including the CDC and other federal agencies.

Any answers/letters from Defendants should include the Case Number, Defendant's name, phone number and email address. The Court will set and hear motions after a review of the motion and case file.

Tenants who are effected by COVID can contact Legal Aid are (561) 655-8944 or Florida Rural Legal Services at 1-800-582-3410 for assistance.

Cases may be dismissed for lack of prosecution if not acted upon by the Plaintiff/Landlord upon the Court's review of the case file.

Case Management Conferences

All Case Management Conferences will be held via Zoom and parties will receive notification via mail or e-service.

Proposed orders

Beginning immediately all Orders for Division RD are to be submitted in Word format through the 15th Judicial Circuit Online Services through the Online Scheduling. Any supporting documents for the Court to review should be efiled with the Clerk and then submitted as attachments to the order. If your order contains footnotes, please contact CAD-DivisionRD@pbcgov.org.

Please continue to monitor 15thcircuit.com and Judge Corlew's webpage for updated information.


Local Rule 4

pdf Local Rule No. 4

Prior to setting a matter on the motion calendar, the party or attorney noticing the motion shall attempt to resolve the matter and shall certify the good faith attempt to resolve.

Cancellations

To cancel a UMC hearing, the parties should cancel the event directly through OLS and file their Notice of Cancellation with the Clerk's Office.

To cancel a hearing (SPECIAL SETS only), please file a Notice of Cancellation with the Clerk's Office. Please send a courtesy copy to the division email cad-divisionRD@pbcgov.org.

E-Service

County Court Division RD participates in the Court's online-eservice program in "Judicial eservice" (optional electronic mailing of orders from Court to Counsel/Registered Parties). If any counsel and or/party are not registered with the Court's online system, counsel shall provide self-addressed stamped envelopes for these parties to be served. See Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.516. See Also Administrative Order 2.310.

Division RD is currently e-serving Orders to Attorneys/parties who have registered their primary and secondary email addresses with the 15th Judicial Circuit. Ensure your registration for Judicial E-Service.

Please note that E-Filing is the electronic filing of documents with the office of the Clerk & Comptroller of Palm Beach County. See Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.515.

Strict Compliance with Amended RJA 2.520

Effective January 1, 2015, The Florida Supreme Court mandated space for recording, date and time stamps on documents. All documents filed with the Court must have one-inch margins on all sides. All documents to be recorded in the Official Records must also have a blank 3-inch x 3-inch space on the top right of the first page and a blank 1-inch x 3-inch space on the top right of all subsequent pages (e.g. Judgments, Orders of Dismissal, Stipulations of Dismissal/Settlement). Documents that do not comply with these rules will be returned to the sender for correction prior to being filed with the Clerk & Comptroller. See Florida Supreme Court Order SC14-721; Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.520.

Thank you everyone for your professionalism and courtesy.

Our Divisional Instructions and Suspension Calendar are very helpful in setting your hearings. Please use them as a guideline.