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Course offers help to lawyers on Rule 2.420, protecting confidential information

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Course offers help to lawyers on Rule 2.420, protecting confidential information

Clerks no longer backing up attorneys by automatic redaction in most civil cases

An online CLE seminar to help Bar members protect confidential client information when they file court documents is set for August 31 from 2-3 p.m.

The seminar, sponsored jointly by the Florida Court Clerks & Comptrollers and the Bar’s LegalFuel Practice Resource Center, takes on added significance because of a recent Supreme Court amendment to Rule of General Practice and Judicial Administration 2.420 that clerks will no longer automatically redact confidential information from most civil filings.

That leaves the responsibility squarely on lawyers’ shoulders.

The course, “Protecting the Public’s Confidential Information in Civil Records,” will look at the rule requirement that lawyers notify clerks when their filings contain confidential information as identified in Rule 2.420. That duty is important because as of July 1 the court has said that “the clerk of court shall not be required to designate and maintain information as confidential unless the filer follow the notice procedures.”

That applies to most civil cases filed in county and circuit courts and small claims courts. Clerks will continue to redact filings pertaining to Jimmy Ryce Civil Commitment cases, medical malpractice cases, and civil cases stemming from instances of sexual abuse. Lawyers also continue to be required to file notices of confidential information for cases filed in other divisions, but clerks will continue an independent redaction review in those cases.

During the CLE, panelists will discuss lawyers’ and other filers’ responsibilities, how to identify confidential information, and how to fill out the required confidentiality disclosure forms fully and accurately.

Specific topics will include who needs to know about the rule change and an overview of the amendment, the 23 types of automatically confidential information spelled out in the rule, the types of cases affected by the rule amendment, how to remove confidential information from a filing, and accessing and filling out the correct notification form to let clerks know a filing contains confidential information.

Seminar panelists are:

  • Manatee County Clerk of Court Angelina “Angel” Colonneso, the current president of the FCCC, a former assistant state attorney, and former general counsel to former Clerk Chips Shore. She also serves on the Florida Courts Technology Commission.
  • Orange County Clerk of Court Tiffany Moore Russell. She is treasurer of the FCCC, a former Orange County commissioner, and sits on the Orange County Domestic Violence Commission and the Domestic Violence Taskforce.
  • Marion County Clerk of Court Gregory C. Harrell, who was elected last year and served as general counsel for the office since 2013. He is a former president of the Marion County Bar Association and has served on numerous civic and charitable organizations.
  • Palm City attorney Paul Regensdorf. He served on the Supreme Court’s Access to Court Records Committee, which wrote the original version of Rule 2.420, and sat for several years on the Rules of Judicial Administration Committee (now the Rules of General Practice and Judicial Administration Committee) where he worked on efforts to update the rule.

The seminar will be held online and registration is here.

The intermediate level course is #5543 and carries a general, technology, or ethics credit.



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