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In re Amendments To Florida Rules of Judicial Administration 2.420-2019 Fast-Track Report

Supreme Court of Florida

October 3, 2019

IN RE: AMENDMENTS TO THE FLORIDA RULES OF JUDICIAL ADMINISTRATION 2.420-2019 FAST-TRACK REPORT.

          Original Proceeding - Florida Rules of Judicial Administration

          Honorable Josephine Gagliardi, Chair, Rules of Judicial Administration Committee, Fort Myers, Florida; and Joshua E. Doyle, Executive Director, and Krys Godwin, Staff Liaison, The Florida Bar, Tallahassee, Florida, for Petitioner

          PER CURIAM.

         The Court has for consideration an amendment to Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.420(d) (Procedures for Determining Confidentiality of Court Records) proposed by The Florida Bar's Rules of Judicial Administration Committee (RJA Committee) in response to recent statutory amendments. See Fla. R. Jud. Admin. 2.140(e)(1). The Court has jurisdiction[1] and amends the rule as proposed by the RJA Committee and approved by the Executive Committee of the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar.

         Subdivision (d)(1)(B)(i) of rule 2.420 currently lists "[c]hapter 39 records relating to dependency matters, termination of parental rights, guardians ad litem, child abuse, neglect, and abandonment" as information the clerk must designate and maintain as confidential and cites to sections 39.0132(3) and 39.0132(4)(a), Florida Statutes. The amendment to subdivision (d)(1)(B)(i) adds a reference to section 39.202, Florida Statutes, which prohibits the release of "the name of, or identifying information with respect to, any person reporting child abuse, abandonment, or neglect" to anyone not listed in the statute, without the written consent of the reporting person. See ch. 2019-49, §§ 1, 3, Laws of Fla. (amending § 39.202(2), (5), Fla. Stat., effective July 1, 2019, to add italicized language).

         Accordingly, the Court amends the Florida Rules of Judicial Administration as reflected in the appendix to this opinion. New language is indicated by underscoring. The amendment shall become effective immediately upon the release of this opinion. Because the amendments were not published for comment prior to their adoption, interested persons shall have seventy-five days from the date of this opinion in which to file comments with the Court.[2]

         It is so ordered.

          CANADY, C.J., and POLSTON, LABARGA, LAWSON, LAGOA, LUCK, and MUÑIZ, JJ., concur.

         THE FILING OF A MOTION FOR REHEARING SHALL NOT ALTER THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THESE AMENDMENTS.

         APPENDIX

         RULE 2.420. PUBLIC ACCESS TO AND PROTECTION OF JUDICIAL BRANCH RECORDS

         (a) - (c) [No Change]

         (d) Procedures for Determining Confidentiality of Court Records.

         (1) The clerk of the court shall designate and maintain the confidentiality of any information contained within a court record that is described in subdivision (d)(1)(A) or (d)(1)(B) of this rule. ...


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