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December 15, 2012
Appellate e-filing delayed

The Florida Supreme Court has delayed the implementation of mandatory electronic filing for the state’s appellate courts until next year.

The court in an earlier ruling had set a deadline of December 1 for e-filing at the Supreme Court and April 1, 2013, for the five district courts of appeal.

However, in a November 28 order, the court set a new schedule as follows:

* February 27, 2013, for the Supreme Court.

* July 22, 2013, for the Second District Court of Appeal.

* September 27, 2013, for the Third DCA.

* October 31, 2013, for the Fourth DCA.

* November 27, 2013, for the Fifth DCA.

* December 27, 2013, for the First DCA.

“The e-filing rules will be effective earlier on a voluntary trial basis in the district courts of appeal, as will be indicated by further administrative order by the chief judge of the applicable district court,” the court said in its order.

The court also approved a request from the Florida Courts Technology Commission to file a new report on setting deadlines for requiring the electronic transmission of records in appellate cases.

That report is due February 1, and the court directed that it “should include transmissions from the trial court to the district courts of appeal, from the trial court to the Florida Supreme Court in death cases, and from the district courts of appeal to the Florida Supreme Court.”

The new ruling did not specifically change the July 1, 2013, deadline for electronic transmission of records.

The ruling also did not change the deadlines for e-filing in the trial courts, which remains April 1 for the five civil divisions and October 1 for criminal cases.

Supreme Court Clerk Tom Hall said the delay allows for necessary software changes to handle electronic filings.

“What’s happening is the new case management software is being rolled out in phases to the district courts of appeal,” he said. “The appellate courts can’t effectively use the portal until they get the new case management software. You can’t roll it out in all six courts at once. We don’t have the staff for that.”

[Revised: 02-17-2017]