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Daily News Summary

The purpose of this summary provided by the Communications Department of The Florida Bar is to present media coverage that may be of interest to members. Opinions expressed in the articles are attributable solely to the authors. The Florida Bar does not adopt or endorse any opinions expressed below. For information on previous articles, please contact the publishing newspaper directly.

October 14, 2020

  1. The Florida Bar

    ADVISORY OPINION ADDRESSES HOW BEST TO RESPOND TO ONLINE CRITICISM

    The Florida Bar | Article | October 14, 2020

    After approving a revised proposed advisory opinion about responding to negative online reviews by current or former clients, the Professional Ethics Committee asked the Board of Governors to instruct it to take a broader look at online criticisms. Several committee members said they’re concerned about whether there’s clear direction on how lawyers can respond not only when current or former clients post criticisms, but also when posts come from non-clients and other attorneys.

  2. Legislative

    AMENDMENT 3 IS POTENTIALLY IN TROUBLE; LAWMAKERS TURN TO SUPREME COURT TO TRY TO BLOCK THE MEASURE

    Florida Phoenix | Article | October 13, 2020

    GOP and Democratic lawmakers filed a petition Tuesday [Oct. 13] with the Florida Supreme Court, seeking to bar state elections officials from enforcing Constitutional Amendment 3, should it pass on Nov. 3. The proposed “top two” or “jungle primary” amendment that justices approved for the ballot. The petition asks the court to issue a rarely granted writ of mandamus — a court order telling a government official to do or not to do something. In this case, they want the court to order elections officials not to certify the amendment should the voters approve it.

  3. Judiciary

    WHAT ARE THE CONSTITUTIONAL CONSIDERATIONS IN RESUMING CIVIL JURY TRIALS DURING A PANDEMIC?

    Daily Business Review | Column | October 13, 2020

    Richard Caldwell, Christian Tiblier and Kathleen Shea of RumbergerKirk write: “As the judicial system attempts to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 crisis, basic constitutional rights in civil as well as criminal cases must be protected in the haste to resume trial proceedings. . . The issue of whether a constitutionally adequate jury can be selected by remote proceeding must be considered. . . Our civil trial system has been effectively immobilized for months, and the pressure to do something, almost anything, to get the court systems moving again mounts unceasingly.”

  4. Civil Justice

    TOUR DE FLORIDA, STAGE 2: PALM BEACH TO ORLANDO

    Courthouse News Service | Article | October 13, 2020

    Florida’s courts were once committed to First Amendment access. Florida’s public access “matrix” — a complex set of permission levels that restrict access to court records — is being taken as a model to follow by some states. In a multi-stage journey, Courthouse News bureau chief Ryan Abbott toured the courts of Florida trying to review court records.

  5. Legal Discipline

    DISBARRED FLORIDA ATTORNEY SENTENCED TO 6 MONTHS IN JAIL FOLLOWED BY PROBATION

    WWSB | Article | October 13, 2020

    Disbarred attorney Christopher Brady was sentenced Friday [Oct. 9] to six months in jail on a felony forgery charge. Brady served a fabricated and fictitious court order to usurp the judicial process that allegedly came from Chief Judge Kimberly Bonner on behalf of Brady’s twin brother, who was in an active custody battle with the mother of his child.

  6. Judiciary

    JURY TRIALS TO RESUME IN ORANGE AND OSCEOLA COUNTIES AMID PANDEMIC

    Click Orlando | Article | October 12, 2020

    Seven months after the COVID-19 pandemic halted jury trials in Florida’s Ninth Judicial Circuit, which covers Orange and Osceola counties, jury summonses are being issued for trials and are scheduled to resume later this month. Chief Judge Donald A. Myers, Jr. said the decision to resume jury trials was prompted by Central Florida’s relatively low COVID-19 positivity rate and case numbers, as well as modifications to courthouses and trial procedures that promote social distancing.

  7. Judiciary

    SUPREME COURT WILL DECIDE CONSTITUTIONALITY OF PATENT APPEAL BOARD APPOINTMENTS

    Insurance Journal | Article | October 14, 2020

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday [Oct. 13] agreed to decide whether more than 100 technology disputes must be reheard because judges were unconstitutionally appointed to a U.S. Patent and Trademark Office tribunal in a case arising from a medical device patent challenge. The 2019 lower court decision found a “constitutional defect” in how Patent Trial and Appeal Board judges are appointed. That ruling came in an appeal by privately held Florida-based medical device company Arthrex.

  8. Criminal Justice

    HD 42 REPUBLICAN FRED HAWKINS CUTS PLEA DEAL ON IMPERSONATING OFFICER CHARGE

    Florida Politics | Article | October 13, 2020

    On Monday [Oct. 12], Republican House District 42 candidate Fred Hawkins Jr. agreed to a plea deal with state prosecutors to enter a diversion program that could lead to dismissal of a felony charge of impersonating a law enforcement officer. Under the arrangement, Hawkins, who was charged based on an episode that took place at a homeowners’ association meeting last year, would enter a pretrial diversion program that would take at least six months to complete. If he completes it, the state agrees to drop prosecution or even to dismiss the charge outright.

  9. Civil Justice

    TWO YEARS AFTER AMENDMENT 4 PASSES, FLORIDA POLITICIANS KEEP BICKERING OVER EX-FELONS’ RIGHTS

    Orlando Sentinel | Article | October 13, 2020

    Scott Maxwell, columnist with the Orlando Sentinel writes: “It has been two years since Floridians voted overwhelmingly to restore civil rights to former felons who have paid all of their debts to society. Yet the political bickering and roadblocks continue. . . It started more than 150 years ago when Florida’s white politicians were worried about freed slaves gaining influence . . . The Sunshine State remained one of only four states that required former felons to personally petition the governor and Cabinet to have their rights restored.”

  10. Civil Justice

    SARASOTA COUNTY WANTS TO MAKE IT HARDER FOR CITIZENS TO CHANGE THE CHARTER

    Sarasota Herald Tribune | Article | October 12, 2020

    Two controversial measures expected to make it harder for citizens’ initiatives to reach the ballot are headed to the Sarasota County Charter Review Board this week. Among other issues, the proposed amendments seek to require that the public proposal not conflict with the Florida Constitution, general law or the county’s charter – the very document most charter amendments look to change.

  11. Wellness Wednesday

    WHY INTERMITTENT SILENCE MAY BE THE FORM OF MEDITATION THAT ACTUALLY WORKS FOR YOU

    The Florida Bar | Article | October 14, 2020

    It may seem odd that doing nothing and being silent can have an impact on our brain function, but that’s exactly what happens. Intermittent silence is taking a break to intentionally sit (or walk or stand) in silence for a period of time, giving yourself the opportunity to disconnect from the noises and distractions of daily life.

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