AA Divisional News
DIVISIONAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR DIVISION AA
IN RE: MITIGATING MEASURES IN RESPONSE TO COVID-19 TO EASILY ENABLE TELEPHONIC OR VIDEO HEARINGS, OR RULINGS SOLELY ON THE PAPERS
The following shall be implemented in Division AA pursuant to Administrative Order No.: 12.510-03/2020.4*
- Unless the parties stipulate otherwise, with the exception of hearings set on Fridays, as set forth in the Administrative Order, all scheduled hearings in Division AA will remain pending. Absent a stipulation, parties may move to reschedule the hearing, and the Court will promptly consider the request. (A copy of all such requests should be sent to CAD-DivisionAA@pbcgov.org.)
- During the duration of Administrative Order No.: 12.510-03/2020.4*, all hearings will be conducted via telephone and must be pre-arranged with a telephone conference provider. This requirement applies to pro se litigants as well as attorneys. Telephone conference providers include Court Call (888-882-6878), CourtScribes (833-727-4237 ext 3), and Zoom (888-799-9666), but parties are free to seek out other vendors or utilize their own conference call provider if they have one. If using a teleconference provider that does not automatically provide a dial-in number, the Notice of Hearing must include the number and passcode that the Court will use to initiate the call at the time of the hearing.
- All papers upon which the parties intend to rely for their scheduled hearings must be filed with the court in advance of the hearing. If the papers do not appear on the docket, the parties must submit all documents which they intend to reference during the hearing 48 hours in advance by email in .pdf format to CAD-DivisionAA@pbcgov.org. Hard copies of documents, binders, etc., will not be accepted by this office until further notice.
- For evidentiary hearings and non-jury trials, the parties should stipulate to the admissibility of evidence for which the admissibility is not reasonably contested. The parties shall provide copies of all intended exhibits, evidence or demonstratives to the Court in advance in .pdf format to CAD-DivisionAA@pbcgov.org.
- If witnesses will be called to give testimony, the Court requires that such appearances be pre-arranged with a teleconference provider as in paragraph 2 above or via video with an appropriate provider. Per Justice Canady's Administrative Order (3-13-2020), all rules of procedure, court orders and opinions applicable to court procedure that limit or prohibit the use of communication equipment for conducting proceedings by electronic means are suspended from the March 13-27, 2020. Moreover, this A.O.'s time period may be extended by Justice Canady.
- To the extent possible, court reporters will also utilize a teleconference or video conference provider to cover hearings/non-jury trials. The Court will administer the oath, or oaths are to be administered in accord with Justice Canady's A.O.
- The parties are encouraged to submit any motions to the Court that they mutually agree the Court may address based solely upon the papers and thereby waive oral argument.
- Any motions to assist fair, timely, effective and efficient efforts suggesting procedures to use to address necessary issues for your respective cases during the current outbreak are strongly encouraged by the Court. It is the intention of the Court to enable and facilitate telephone or video hearings in a practical manner or to allow rulings on the papers when acceptable to the parties. Above all, though, the Court wishes to provide for the administration of justice without risking anyone's safety.
Important notice regarding uniform motion calendar procedures to promote safety measures in response to COVID-19
Beginning Tuesday, March 24, all Uniform Motion Calendar hearings will be conducted by telephone only. No one will be present in the courtroom. This rule applies to pro se litigants and court reporters as well as attorneys. In addition, only hearings that have been scheduled on the online scheduling system will go forward.
Courtroom 10H of the Palm Beach County Courthouse should not be used as the place of hearing on notices of hearing. Instead, future notices of hearing must state that the hearing will be held by telephone conference call. Hearings must be set up with the telephone conference provider of your choice, and all parties must be on the same call. If using Court Call, the dial-in information is automatically provided and the court is furnished with a list of the scheduled hearings. If using another provider, or if you choose to use your own teleconferencing system, you must provide the court with the dial-in information, including passcode, in advance. This information must be included in your notice of hearing.
Motion calendar will still commence at 8:30 a.m. and is extended to at least 10:00 a.m. to accommodate the extra time that may be needed for telephone conferencing. Please call in and have all parties on the line promptly at 8:30 a.m. Judge Curley will then call into each case as it appears on the online calendar. Please be patient and continue to hold on the line until your case is called.
Most general questions can be answered by reading the Divisional Instructions herein. For case-specific questions the best way to contact the Judicial Assistant is via email at CAD-DivisionAA@pbcgov.org.
Cancelling a UMC
There is some confusion about how to cancel a uniform motion calendar hearing. An order cancelling a UMC hearing is not required. If you are trying to cancel a UMC hearing and a message appears that you cannot cancel the hearing you are in the wrong place. That message applies to Special Set Hearings, which are set and cancelled by court order only. Please go back to where you originally set the hearing (i.e., as if you were setting the UMC hearing), and there is an option to cancel it.
Calendar call on Friday, May 15, 2020 for the trial docket of May 25 - July 3, 2020 has been cancelled.
All cases set for jury trial during this docket period have been set for Case Management Conferences to discuss case status and a future trial setting. If your case is on this docket and you did not receive an order please email the judicial assistant at CAD-DivisionAA@pbcgov.org.
Instructions for Service of Orders to the Court
- Agreed orders and orders requested by the Judge from a prior hearing should be submitted through the Online Services System (in Word format). VERY IMPORTANT: PLEASE INCLUDE A COVER LETTER AS AN ATTACHMENT STATING THAT ALL PARTIES HAVE REVIEWED THE PROPOSED ORDER AND DO NOT OBJECT TO THE FORM OF THE ORDER.
- If the order being submitted is regarding a hearing held in open court, the date of the hearing must be included in the first sentence of the order.
- Attorneys must be in agreement of the Order(s) being submitted to the Court prior to it being sent. If parties are NOT in agreement to the Order(s) then counsel/parties shall submit a cover letter stating the issue(s) and their Proposed Order(s) for the Court to review.
- Documents submitted which require service to a pro se party must indicate that the moving party is required to furnish the order via US Mail.
Local Rule 4
The Court expects strict compliance with Local Rule 4.
Prior to setting a matter for hearing, the party or attorney noticing the motion/matter shall attempt to resolve the matter and shall certify the good faith attempt to resolve. All notices of hearing for matters scheduled for hearing shall set forth directly above the signature block, the below certifications without modification and shall designate with a check mark or other marking the specific certification which applies:
Counsel has conferred with all parties who may be affected by the relief sought in the motion in a good faith effort to resolve or narrow the issues raised.
Counsel has made reasonable efforts to confer with all parties who may be affected by the relief sought in the motion but has been unable to do so.
Online Scheduling System
Both Uniform Motion Calendar hearings and Special Set hearings of 15 and 30 minutes must be set using the Division AA Online Scheduling System. Use of this system requires a user ID and password. Please see the link to the instructions on the Online Services page. Technical questions regarding the system should be directed to CAD-WEB@pbcgov.org. The Judicial Assistant is not able to answer these questions.
UNIFORM MOTION CALENDAR ("UMC") hearings are set online (see "Divisional Instructions" for further details). Please send a courtesy copy of the motion and notice in hard copy for the judge's review prior to the hearing. To cancel a UMC hearing, please go to the UMC scheduling page (i.e., as if you were setting the hearing), and there will be an option to cancel.
SPECIAL SET HEARINGS of 15 and 30 minutes are set on the Online Scheduling System. Once the hearing time has been obtained from the system, an order setting the hearing will be generated. The order is then sent for signature and e-served through the Online Scheduling System. Please note that Special set hearings are set by court order, not by notice of hearing.
Telephonic appearances must be set up at least 24 hours in advance via CourtCall. A motion and order are not needed. See Divisional Instructions.
Division AA is currently e-serving orders prepared by the Court to attorneys or pro se litigant(s) that have registered their primary and secondary e-mail addresses with the Fifteenth Circuit. Please make sure you are registered for judicial e-service in the 15th Circuit. Orders submitted by attorneys shall be submitted with sufficient copies and self-addressed stamped envelopes for the parties not registered. Please ensure that primary and secondary email addresses are registered with Court Administration via our Online Services. See Administrative Order 2.310.
Please note: the filing of a "notice of e-mail designation" does not register you for judicial e-service; you must register on the 15th circuit's website. Failure to register may result in orders being sent by default to the e-mail address on file with the Florida Bar. Please be advised that the Judicial Assistant is unable to remove, unable to add, and unable to change any certificate of service from any Court file. The email information/addresses are collected from the State's E-Portal filings and the email addresses entered by the Clerk of Court into their database. Please contact both the Clerk of Court and the State's E-Portal site to be removed from the service list in this case.
PLEASE SEE "DIVISIONAL INSTRUCTIONS" for detailed procedural information for Division "AA".