WHEREAS, the Florida Supreme Court has encouraged judicial circuits to establish Unified Family Courts as a way to more efficiently and effectively address the needs of families with multiple related Family Law court cases, and
WHEREAS, the judges and various other stakeholders throughout the Seventh Judicial Circuit are also supportive of Unified Family Courts and have worked diligently to bring the UFC concept to fruition in all counties of the circuit;
NOW THEREFORE, I, RAUL A. ZAMBRANO, Chief Judge of the Seventh Judicial Circuit Court of Florida, hereby order that Unified Family Courts be formally established in Flagler, Putnam, St. Johns and Volusia counties to hear such matters involving related Family Law cases as may be assigned.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that topics such as definitions, case assignments/reassignments, division designations, and judicial rotations will be the subjects of separate administrative orders. In summary, when a Family Law case is filed, the Clerk’s office will ascertain if an active Family Law case involving the same family exists. If such an active related Family Law case exists, the newly filed case is to be assigned to the same judicial division. Family Case Management staff will assist the Clerks’ offices with the identification of related cases and the assignment/reassignment thereof. Additional issues that may arise are to be coordinated and mutually agreed upon by the affected judges.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerks’ offices are to make provisions within their respective case maintenance systems to “link” related Family Law cases.
TO BE RECORDED in Flagler, Putnam, St. Johns and Volusia Counties.
DONE AND ORDERED in DeLand, Volusia County, Florida, this 2nd day of August 2018.
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