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The Florida Senate

CS/CS/SB 838 — Clerks of the Circuit Court

by Appropriations Committee; Judiciary Committee; and Senators Boyd, Bracy, Wright, Torres, and Hooper

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Judiciary Committee (JU)

The bill amends laws related to the funding of the clerks of court to:

  • Require the Clerk of Courts Operations Corporation to establish and maintain a budget reserve of up to 16 percent of the budget from the previous year;
  • Specify that portions of certain service charges that are required to be transferred to the General Revenue Fund only apply for performing services related to a “court record”; and
  • Change the procedure for clerks of the circuit court to receive payments for management of the jury process to a reimbursement basis.

The bill amends laws related to monies collectible by a clerk of court to:

  • Specify that fines, costs, service charges, and court costs are due immediately upon assessment;
  • Require that a person owing monies who cannot immediately pay must contact the clerk and set up a payment plan; except that a person incarcerated must contact the clerk within 30 days after release from incarceration to pay or set up a payment plan;
  • Require that the clerks of court create a statewide uniform payment plan form for monies owed; and
  • Require that notice of the availability of payment plans be given to a person when receiving a traffic infraction or a notice of suspension of driving privilege.

If approved by the Governor, the provisions regarding clerk’s budgeting take effect upon becoming law, the provisions regarding jury reimbursement and designation of court-related fees take effect July 1, 2021, and the remaining provisions take effect October 1, 2021.

Vote: Senate 40-0; House 117-0