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Dorothy Frances Easley

Dorothy Easley’s Answers

9 total

  • What does "appellants/respondents" mean?

    We got an order from a Florida district court of appeals that referred to the parties as "appellants/petitioners" and "appellees/respondents". My understanding is that the terms "petitioners" and "respondents" are limited to appeals under Section...

    Dorothy’s Answer

    In Florida state appellate courts, there could be a couple of reasons for this. First, if it's a final appeal, then the parties are referred to as appellant (the party appealing) and appellee (the party that is not appealing and most likely was satisfied with what happened below). In family law matters and in equity proceedings, the parties are referred to in the lower court as petitioner and respondent. It's possible that the appellant/petitioner reflects that this was a family law matter or some equity proceeding. It is also possible that, while one believes this is a final appeal, it may be an extraordinary writ. Appellate courts have the authority to construe an appeal under the appropriate proceeding. So the upshot is that, a party may have filed a notice of appeal of a final order, but the appellate court may have reviewed that order and understood it to be an order under an extraordinary writ proceeding. Final appeals, nonfinal appeals of appealable orders and extraordinary writs have different briefing schedules and requirements. It would be a good idea for you to have the order reviewed by a board certified appellate attorney. Hope this helps answer your questions. Professional disclaimer: This is not to be construed as legal advice or the creation of an attorney-client relationship.

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  • If a plaintiff is dismissed from a case, do other parties who are creditors of that party have standing to appeal the dismissal?

    A corporate plaintiff was dismissed from a civil lawsuit. A partnership which was the successor to the corporation remained a plaintiff. There were also individual plaintiffs who remained as plaintiffs. If the individual plaintiffs are creditors...

    Dorothy’s Answer

    Standing is very fact specific and not always simple. Generally, if the individual plaintiffs are parties, then they may have standing to appeal the dismissal of the corporate plaintiff and would want to appeal. Hope that answers your threshold question. This is not legal advice and research would be required to provide a complete answer.

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  • If a party to a civil lawsuit is dismissed, can another party appeal the dismissal?

    Is the party that is dismissed the only one that has standing to appeal, or do parties that are affected by the dismissal also have standing?

    Dorothy’s Answer

    The general rule in Florida appellate practice is that, if one defendant is dismissed from a lawsuit in Florida state court (as opposed to federal court, where dismissal does not yet require an appeal generally until the end of the case), the plaintiff OR the other defendant may appeal that final order of dismissal. (In federal court, that rule is a little different.) There are some nuances to the rule, such as whether there are pending counterclaims, crossclaims or other claims as to that dismissed defendant, which can impact whether there is jurisdiction over the appeal. But the short answer is yes, a plaintiff or a defendant may, and often times should, appeal from the dismissal of another defendant that completely dismisses that defendant from the case. Hope this answers your question.

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  • How do I find a good appellate lawyer to handle my civil appeal?

    How do I find a good appellate lawyer to handle my civil appeal?

    Dorothy’s Answer

    The Florida Bar Board Certified Appellate lawyers are appellate specialists, qualified to handle civil appeals, as well as criminal, administrative and federal appeals all the way to the US Supreme Court. The certification process is rigorous. Out of 86,000 plus lawyers in Florida, less than 200 are board certified appellate specialists who work regularly in this complex area of law. Here is a link to the Board Certified Appellate Specialists in Florida: https://www.floridabar.org/names.nsf/CERT?openv... Good luck with your search!

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  • Can i get names of succesful civil appeal lawyers?

    can i get names of succesful civil appeal lawyers?

    Dorothy’s Answer

    The Florida Bar Board Certified Appellate lawyers are appellate specialists, qualified to handle civil appeals, as well as criminal, administrative and federal appeals all the way to the US Supreme Court. The certification process is rigorous. Out of 86,000 plus lawyers in Florida, less than 200 are board certified appellate specialists who work regularly in this complex area of law. Here is a link to the Board Certified Appellate Specialists in Florida: https://www.floridabar.org/names.nsf/CERT?openview&RestrictToCategory=AP Good luck with your search!

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  • Should I have my attorney file with appellate court requesting a writ of mandamus?

    The record was closed Dec 1 of 2010 and the judge has not ruled. He apologizes and says it is the next substantive case on his plate. It is a divorce case. Should I wait it out or go for the writ. I am concerned if I get the writ, he will not ...

    Dorothy’s Answer

    This is a long time, but courts are inundated and grossly understaffed now due to the legislature budget cuts. Florida citizens are hurt by the budget cuts to the courts. That said, your trial attorney could do a "Notice of Ripeness of Adjudication", a proposed order and attach a copy of the transcript and "request a hearing to aid the court's review". If 3 weeks go by without a decision, he/she could do another one. If another 3 weeks go by, a petition for writ of mandamus may be a strong option, but a writ of mandamus is there to compel a ministerial act, so the writ needs to be very carefully and strategically advanced or it won't deliver the relief desired and may only alienate the trial court, which is already overloaded. Just as appellate lawyers don't specialize in trial work, trial lawyers don't specialize in appellate work. You will want to use an appellate lawyer to draft and file your writ if it comes to that. Hope that helps.

    The above is general information only and is not intended to be and should not be construed as legal advice or the creation of an attorney-client relationship, absent formal retention, in writing, of this law firm.

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  • How do I go about an appeals process if the direct appeal has been submitted by a public defender, but i want to hire council?

    My fiance has been sentenced to 15 years in State Prison for a vehicular homicide charge. The public defender does not give me any information on how to get things moving on an appeal, she just told me it can take 18 months. Can I get things rolli...

    Dorothy’s Answer

    The delay can be a result of the trial court clerk putting together the record [long records take longer than short records], of the court reporter [in criminal appeals, they are court appointed, rather than selected by private counsel] and they are of late inundated and taking a long time to get transcripts completed. No matter the attorney your fiance chooses, those delays will still be there, though there are some methods private attorneys can employ to get the record completed sooner. There are some high quality PD appellate attorneys, and they do criminal law all of the time. Private appellate attorneys have the luxury of spending more time on each individual appeal. Your PD appellate attorney may not be communicating much at this juncture because the record is being compiled and it is the record--not new evidence--that the appellate court will be looking at in an appeal. If you decide to use private counsel, be sure to research him/her carefully at www.flabar.org.
    For more questions, feel free to contact me at 305-777-0258. I'll try to point you in the right direction and answer any additional questions you have.

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  • If a tenant appeals a possession judgment does the tenant stay in home or apt until the appeal is done?

    If a tenant appeals a possession judgment does the tenant stay in home or apt until the appeal is done?

    Dorothy’s Answer

    I agree with the previous answer and add that the tenant usually must seek a stay of the eviction proceedings and that stay, if the court grants it, remains in effect until the appeal is complete--generally when a decision comes out.

    My standard disclaimer: I am not offering legal advice; I am just making suggestions for starting points for when you do speak with an attorney. My comments here are merely for educational purposes and you should seek the advice of an attorney and present your specific, detailed facts when seeking that advice.

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  • HOW DO I GET A PROTECTIVE ORDER AGAINST ME DISNISSED IF JUDGE DENIED A RE-HEARING??

    I WAS UNABLE TO ATTEND THE ORIGINAL HEARING, AND MY SON WENT ON MY BEHALF WITH A NOTORIZED LETTER STATING MY EMERGENCY WITH MY DAUGHTER, THE JUDGE (FILLING IN FOR THE REGULAR JUDGE THAT WEEK) DIDNT EVEN CONSIDER AND AN ORDER WAS ENTERED AGAINST ME...

    Dorothy’s Answer

    I agree with the previous answer. You need to seek out trial attorneys in your area that handle domestic relations and licensing issues. You may feel that you don't have the resources, but it is worth the time to seek counsel to protect your rights and to protect your license--your livelihood. There is a saying in the law--which most attorneys themselves agree with--that anyone who will represent him/herself has a fool for a client. At a minimum, seek a free one-hour consultation with a trial attorney in your area that works in these substantive areas of law.

    My standard disclaimer: I am not offering legal advice, legal services, or creating an attorney-client relationship, and my comments are merely suggestions for starting points for when you do consult with an attorney.

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