The Florida Supreme Court issues rules for handling post-trial writs

The Florida Supreme Court for the first time passed rules specifically aimed at how judges should deal with court records after they have left the court.

The Florida Supreme Court said there was a need to address proper post-trial handling of court records, which it defines as “records made or received by a judge or judge in connection with the conduct of official business.” to eliminate “uncertainties or inconsistencies” on judicial secrecy after leaving office. The development took the form of an amendment to the Florida Rule of General Practice and Judicial Administration 2.420 and the Code of Judicial Conduct.

The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday amended Rule 2,420, which governs public access to and protection of court and administrative records, to specify that every judge or judge must turn over to the court chief justice officer all Judiciary Department records in his or her possession .

“This amendment takes into account the retirement of judges and judges from the bench and formally relieves them of their role under rule 2.420 as custodians of records,” the Per Curiam said Verdict says.

The Court also amended Canon 3(B)(12) of the Code of Judicial Conduct to say that former judges are expected to “maintain the confidentiality of non-public information obtained in a judicial capacity”.

“This wording is intended to emphasize the expectation of judicial confidentiality beyond retirement and to communicate this to the public,” the report says.

The case is Regarding changes to the Florida Rules of General Practice & Judicial Admin. & the Judicial Code of ConductFlorida, #SC22-1387, 11/17/22.

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