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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.

June 23, 2022

  1. The Florida Bar

    WORKGROUP ON IMPROVED RESOLUTION OF CIVIL CASES GIVEN MORE TIME TO RESPOND TO COMMENTS

    The Florida Bar | Article | June 23, 2022

    The Florida Supreme Court has granted the Workgroup on Improved Resolution of Civil Cases Judicial Management Council more time to respond to the scores of comments generated by its sweeping proposal to speed the resolution of civil cases in Florida. The panel was facing a twice-extended, June 23 deadline to respond to public comments, but Second District Court of Appeal Chief Judge Robert Morris, the workgroup chair, said the panel has been inundated. The proposed amendments to Rules of General Practice and Judicial Administration, Rules of Civil Procedure, Small Claims Rules, and Rules of Mediation, are so comprehensive that interest in commenting has been high. Justices granted an extension until September 20.

  2. Criminal Justice

    GRAND JURY INDICTMENT UNSEALED AGAINST FORMER DEMOCRATIC GOVERNOR CANDIDATE ANDREW GILLUM

    Daily Business Review | Article | June 22, 2022

    A federal magistrate judge in Tallahassee unsealed a federal grand jury indictment Wednesday [June 22] involving Andrew Gillum, the former Tallahassee mayor and 2018 gubernatorial candidate, who the FBI subsequently arrested over allegations that include fraudulently fundraising from “various entities.” Jason R. Coody, the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Florida, charged Gillum and his mentor, Sharon Janet Lettman-Hicks on allegations that Gillum and Lettman-Hicks conspired to commit wire fraud by unlawfully soliciting and obtaining through false and fraudulent promises and representations that the funds would be used for a legitimate purpose. In addition, the government alleged that the defendants used third parties to divert a portion of those funds to a company owned by Lettman-Hicks, who then allegedly provided the funds, disguised as payroll payments, to Gillum for personal use.

  3. Judiciary

    DESANTIS’ ‘STOP WOKE’ LAW DRAWS ANOTHER LAWSUIT

    Orlando Sentinel | Article | June 22, 2022

    As Chief U.S. District Judge Mark Walker considers whether to block a new state law that Gov. Ron DeSantis dubbed the “Stop WOKE Act,” businesses filed a second challenge Wednesday [June 22] in federal court alleging that the law violates First Amendment rights. The law restricts the way certain race-related concepts can be taught in public schools and in workplace training. The lawsuit, filed by two businesses and a consultant who conducts workplace training, alleges that the law is “an immediate infringement of plaintiffs’ free speech rights.” The challenge was filed a day after Judge Walker heard arguments about whether he should issue a preliminary injunction against the law, which is slated to take effect July 1.

  4. Civil Justice

    COMPLAINT: TALLAHASSEE HOUSING AUTHORITY FORCING RESIDENTS INTO ‘SEGREGATED NEIGHBORHOODS’

    Tallahassee Democrat | Article | June 22, 2022

    In a complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Tallahassee on Tuesday [June 22], Legal Services of North Florida the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and the Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton law firm allege that the Tallahassee Housing Authority (THA) has mismanaged the relocation of hundreds of families from Orange Avenue Apartments, which is slated to be torn down and redeveloped. They contend that the THA violated the Fair Housing Act by circumventing promises made in a redevelopment master plan for and argue the THA’s plans “will displace its heavily Black tenant population into more racially segregated neighborhoods with fewer economic and social opportunities.” This, they argue, will exacerbate “Tallahassee’s long history of residential segregation and causing exactly the kind of racially discriminatory result that the Fair Housing Act prohibits.”

  5. Judiciary

    FLORIDA INSURANCE RULING SETS PRECEDENT ON NEW ASSIGNMENT-OF-BENEFITS LAW

    Daily Business Review | Article | June 22, 2022

    A Florida Fourth District Court of Appeal ruling might become the blueprint for attorneys to successfully argue in favor of homeowners and their insurers against contractors in the application of a new Florida law. West Palm Beach attorney Jake D. Huxtable represented the appellee, United Property & Casualty Insurance Co., against the appellant, the Kidwell Group LLC, in a case of first impression centered on Florida Statutes Sec. 627.7152, which covers assignment agreements and requires contractors to follow new rules to prevent them from taking advantage of homeowners and their insurance companies.

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