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01/15/2013 - eService / ePortal

The Docket January 2013

Clerks and Courts partner to add eService functionality to ePortal

"All documents required or permitted to be served on another party must be served by e-mail, unless this rule otherwise provides." Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.516(b) (1) (Service of Pleadings and Paper).

It hasn't been that long since a new requirement by the Florida Supreme Court mandated attorneys serve eachother electronically.

In response to questions, the Florida provided information on their website at www.floridabar.com on the topic of e-Service, with a section called What Florida Lawyers Need to Know About e-Filing and e-Service. The webpage and subsequent links provide training, FAQs and other tools for attorneys. For right now, email is what e-service is all about.


But not for long. E-Service through the portal? It's coming.

The Florida Courts E-Filing Authority has directed the Florida Courts e-Portal developer (Florida Court Clerks & Comptrollers) to incorporate e-Service into the portals functionality. The portal development team includes a developer who has experience with the federal PACER system, which currently offers e-Service.

The goal is to design a component embedded in the e-Portal with the e-Service functionality. Programming the portal to initiate e-Service will mean a collaboration between a statewide workgroup of attorneys, the judiciary, Clerks and the e-Portal development team. The next few months will be spent deciding how this should be done, and what it will mean to you, the filers and users of the system.

Per the Florida Supreme Court opinion. mandatory email service between attorneys went into effect September 1, 2012, for civil, probate, small claims, and family law divisions of the trial courts, as well as for all appellate cases. Criminal, traffic and juvenile case type email service between attorneys will be mandatory October 1, 2013. As new information becomes available, we will update Docket readers and members of the Bar.