final until disposition of timely filed motion for rehearing.
of Original Jurisdiction-Prohibition. Lower Tribunal No.
Offices of Robin Bresky, and Jeremy Dicker and Robin Bresky
(Boca Raton), for petitioner.
A. Hass, P.A., and Nancy A. Hass (Fort Lauderdale), for
SALTER, SCALES and LINDSEY, JJ.
Becker (the "husband") petitions this Court to
prohibit the trial judge from further presiding over this
dissolution of marriage action. We grant the petition because
the husband's verified disqualification motion was
RELEVANT FACTS AND PROCEDURAL
December 4, 2018, the husband filed a petition for
dissolution of marriage from Dana Lee Becker (the
"wife") in the lower court. Immediately following a
June 17, 2019 hearing on various motions, the husband learned
that the wife's counsel had, several years prior,
represented the trial judge in the trial judge's
contested divorce case.
following day, June 18, 2019, the husband filed a verified
motion for disqualification of the trial judge. In his
motion, the husband asserted that the previous
attorney-client relationship (between the wife's counsel
and the trial judge) had not been disclosed by either the
trial judge or the wife's counsel. The husband asserted
that, as a result of the nondisclosure, (i) the husband was
concerned that the trial judge may have a bias in favor of
the wife's counsel, and (ii) the husband had a reasonable
fear that the husband would not receive a fair trial.
3, 2019, the trial court summarily denied the husband's
disqualification motion as legally insufficient. The husband
now seeks a writ from this Court prohibiting the trial judge
from continuing to preside over this case. We have
3E of Florida's Code of Judicial Conduct provides, in
relevant part, as follows:
(1) A judge shall disqualify himself or herself in a
proceeding in which the judge's impartiality might
reasonably be questioned, including but ...