Guardianship Task Force

Florida Court Clerks & Comptrollers Announce Task Force to Improve Guardianships 

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – June 30, 2021, the Florida Court Clerks & Comptrollers (FCCC) announced the formation of the Guardianship Improvement Task Force (Task Force). The Task Force will be sponsored and supported by FCCC, and members will work together to study the status of current guardianships in Florida and offer positive legislative recommendations leading up to 2022 Legislative Session.

“Clerks of Court have a significant responsibility to ensure our services effectively support the guardianship process,” said Tara. S. Green, FCCC President and Clay County Clerk of Court and Comptroller. “As part of our commitment to residents, we are constantly reviewing ways to improve upon our practices, and we look forward to joining our partners on the Guardianship Improvement Task Force to review improvements across the entire system.”

“The guardianship process is instrumental in ensuring the protection of the vulnerable in communities throughout Florida,” said Ken Burke, CPA, Pinellas County Clerk of Court and Comptroller and Task Force Chair. “With the Guardianship Improvement Task Force, we are looking at opportunities to address gaps and promote recommendations based on expert feedback, so the system works more effectively for those it’s meant to protect.”

The first meeting of the Task Force will be held on July 7, 2021, at the Epicenter at St. Petersburg College in Clearwater, FL. After the first meeting, a total of five bi-weekly meetings will be held virtually at future times and days of the week determined by the Task Force. Details for each event will be announced in advisories in advance.

Members of the Guardianship Improvement Task Force include:

  • Ken Burke, CPA, Pinellas County Clerk of Court and Comptroller – Chair
  • Crystal Kinzel, Collier County Clerk of Court and Comptroller
  • JD Peacock II, Okaloosa County Clerk of Court and Comptroller
  • Senator Jennifer Bradley
  • Representative Colleen Burton
  • Sean Cadigan, General Magistrate, 13th Judicial Circuit
  • Retired Circuit Court Judge Jose R. Rodriguez
  • Representative from the Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section of the Florida Bar
  • Shannon Miller, Elder Law Section Member, The Florida Bar
  • Anthony Palmieri, Statewide Investigation Alliance
  • Gina Rossi-Scheiman, Executive Director, Florida State Guardianship Association
  • Viviana Bonilla Lopez, Esq., Equal Justice Fellow (Disability Rights Florida)
  • Hillary Hogue, Ward Advocate
  • Zayne Smith, Associate State Director of Advocacy, AARP
  • Dennis Moore, Interim Director, Guardian Ad Litem Program
  • Mike Donovan, Community Development Attorney, Legal Services of North Florida, Florida Legal Aid Association
  • Richard Prudom, Secretary, Florida Department of Elder Affairs
  • Representative from the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs
  • Michelle T. Morley, 5th Judicial Circuit Judge (Advisory Role)

Changes Coming to Redaction of Confidential Information

Beginning July 1, all filers of circuit civil, county civil and small claims court documents will be solely responsible for ensuring that confidential information is redacted or is identified for redaction.

In Opinion 20-1765, the Florida Supreme Court amended Rule 2.420 requiring the filer to be solely responsible for identifying confidential information in small claims, county civil and most circuit civil court documents.

Anyone filing documents in these types of cases must either:
• Redact the information themselves before filing the document; or,
File a Notice of Confidential Information when records contain social security numbers, bank account numbers or other non-public information, as specified in Florida Rule of General Practice and Judicial Administration 2.420. The Notice of Confidential Information must identify the type of information to be redacted and all page numbers containing that information. This includes exhibits attached to court filings.

These changes do not apply to juvenile, family, guardianship, probate or criminal cases.

Learn More

Ask a Lawyer

The Law Library is now offering an Ask A Lawyer Program (ALP). The ALP program is a collaborative effort with the Okaloosa Bar Association whereby patrons can meet with a local attorney for a one-time consultation to get answers to a variety of civil legal questions, assistance with filling out form packets, as well as general procedural information. 

Consultations are currently being held by Zoom on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month.
Consultations may include:

  • Small Claims
  • Landlord/Tenant
  • Debt Collection/Bankruptcy
  • Contracts/Warranties
  • Limited Family Law Assistance, such as Time-Sharing, Division of Property, Dissolution of Marriage, Child Support, or Alimony
  • Assistance filling out form packets
  • General procedural information

For more information contact the Law Library:
Phone: (850)651-7256
Email: lawlibrary@myokaloosa.com
Website: The Okaloosa Law Library Web Page

Law Library

The Law Library is committed to serving the public, self-represented litigants, and the legal community by providing access to legal material in both print and electronic format. Librarians are not permitted to give legal advice, but they do provide patrons with guidance toward finding information. The Law Library has self-help law materials in areas such as Family Law, Business Law, Bankruptcy Law, Probate Law, Landlord/Tenant Law, and other legal topics. Additionally, suggested legal websites are provided as a starting point for online research.

Website: http://myokaloosa.com/public-law-library
Phone Number: (850) 651-7256

Inspector General – Feedback

The Clerk’s Inspector General Department is seeking feedback on their work. Members of the public are invited to provide comments to help the department improve its policies and procedures and better serve the citizens of Okaloosa County.

Please direct all comments to clerkig@okaloosaclerk.com. We will be accepting comments until January 5th, 2021.

Information about the Clerk’s Inspector General Department as well as copies of published audit and investigative reports can be found at okaloosaclerk.com/inspector-general. Fraud, waste, and abuse can also be reported directly through this site.

This request is specifically for the Inspector General’s Department feedback.

All public records request should be directed to the designated Records Custodian, Don Allgood.

Don Allgood, D.C., RMO, RMLO, CPM
Office of the Clerk of Circuit Court and Comptroller
1940 Lewis Turner Blvd.
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547
PublicRecords@Okaloosaclerk.com