One of the many new laws coming out of the 2020 legislative session, Senate Bill 1392 will significantly limit Florida circuit court appellate jurisdiction. Beginning January 1, 2021, civil and criminal appeals from county court decisions will be heard by the district courts of appeal. This means that cases will essentially skip the circuit court level of review and will be sent directly to the higher-level district courts. Some types of cases that may be impacted by this legislation include:
- County civil disputes involving between $15,000-$30,000
- Traffic offenses
- Misdemeanor criminal charges
Some people believe this change will be for the better, as district courts might be better equipped to handle the caseloads more efficiently and consistently. According to the Senate Appropriations Committee, this change will help resolve the problem of having conflicting circuit opinions within the same circuit and the same district. Further, it may cost less for an individual to pursue an appeal, as the district courts may only charge $100 for a filing fee, whereas circuit courts may charge up to $280. Circuit courts will still be able to review final administrative orders.
The lawyers at Turner O’Connor Kozlowski, P.L. are equipped to handle appeals at all levels of Florida state and federal courts. Please call us at (352) 372-4263 if you are considering filing an appeal in your case.