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Chapter 394 of the Florida Statutes is known as "The Baker Act" and as "The Florida Mental Health Act". A Baker Act proceeding is a means of providing an individual with emergency services and temporary detention for mental health evaluation and treatment, either on a voluntary or involuntary basis.
A voluntary Baker Act admission occurs when a person 18 years of age or older, or a parent of a minor, applies for admission to a facility for observation, diagnosis, and treatment.
An involuntary Baker Act admission occurs upon a finding by a court that:
A person who has personal knowledge of the behavior of the individual, should give sworn testimony. The individual believed to be suffering from mental illness should be in Escambia County. The petitioner(s) must have observed the behavior and must have talked to the individual about obtaining a voluntary examination within a few days. Petitions should be filed with Escambia County Clerk of Court, Probate Division, 190 W. Government St., Pensacola FL 32502.
The order will be sent to the Warrants Division of the Escambia County Sheriff's Office, which will take the person into custody and to a receiving facility. Receiving Facilities for our area can be found in this list provided by the Florida Department of Children and Families. The person is examined at the facility and the staff and doctors there determine any further action.
A person may not be held for more than 72 hours.
Florida's Baker Act Law is located in Chapter 394 of the Florida Statutes.
A schedule of upcoming Board of County Commissioner meetings can be found online.
Generally, two Regular Meetings are held on the first and third Thursdays of each month at 5:30 p.m, with the Public Forum portion of the Meeting at 4:30 p.m, prior to the start of the Regular Meeting. Special Meetings may be scheduled to handle specific topics and two Public Hearings are held each year, typically in September, for consideration of adopting the County Budget. The Meeting Schedule is published in the Pensacola News Journal every Saturday. Board Meetings are typically televised "live" on ECTV Channel 98, via Cox Cable, Mediacom, and Brighthouse cable providers.
Possibly. During the actual meeting, the Board of County Commissioners (BCC) meetings are broadcast from MyEscambiaCares and can be watched using RealPlayer.
The meeting agenda for each meeting can be found on MyEscambia.
After the approval at the succeeding BCC Meeting; however, the Resume showing the BCC's action for each agenda item is published to the website on the first working day following the Meeting.
Yes. The Board Minutes are available to the public.
Audio CDs are available for $10 each. The County's Public Information Office (PIO) also produces DVDs of the Meetings; however, these DVDs are not available from the Clerk's Office. Please contact the PIO for DVDs.
Yes. The indexing is online from July 1984 through May 1997, with references to microfilm. From June 1997 to the present date, the indexing is integrated with an imaging system that allows viewing of the Minutes and Exhibits on the computer, with microfilm as a permanent record backup. The Minutes between 1868 and part of 1887 are available in ledger books and on microfilm; however, they are not indexed.
Yes, at $0.15 per page.
No. However, the Ordinances are available online at the Municode Library.
If the body of water on which you received the citation straddles two counties, check the ticket to see which county you were cited in.
You may pay your court fines, fees, restitution, and other costs using either of the three methods listed. However, some traffic violations require that you show proof of insurance, drivers license, or other required items before the traffic citation can be considered closed. Failure to do so may result in the suspension of the defendant’s drivers license.
Generally, these are civil infractions with fines that can be paid through the mail. A boating violation must be paid within 30 days of the date on the citation. That means that within the 30 days after the date of the ticket you may pay the fine and do not have to appear in court.
If you do not pay the fine before the 30 days is up or you intend to contest the charge, you must appear in court at the time and place designated on your ticket.
The Office of the Judge of Compensation Claims (OJCC) now has access to both the Department of Revenue and the Clerk's child support arrearage information and databases. Requests for child support arrearage information in Florida workers' compensation cases should be filed with the assigned Judge of Compensation Claims using the e-JCCs system. Effective January 1, 2014, any requests for child support arrearage in a workers' compensation case received by the Clerk's office will be directed to the OJCC.
Child Support is money paid from one parent to the other for the benefit of their children.
The obligor is the parent that is ordered to pay child support.
The obligee is the parent that receives child support. A person whose duty it is to safeguard and account for that which is given into his custody.
The Florida State Disbursement Unit (SDU) is required by Federal Law to collect and disburse child support payments ordered by the court.
The Florida State Disbursement Unit was established pursuant to Florida Statutes, s. 61.1824 and the Federal Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1999 (commonly known as the Welfare Reform Act). Also, pursuant to Title IV-D of the Social Security Act, the SDU provides one central address for the collection and disbursement of child support payments in cases enforced by the Department of Revenue.
In Florida, cases with an initial support order issued on or after January 1, 1994, in which the obligor's child support is being paid through an Income Deduction Order/Income Withholding Order (IDO/IWO) are also collected and disbursed by the SDU.
A court order that instructs the obligor's employer to withhold the child support payment from the obligor's income and send it to the Florida State Disbursement Unit (SDU).
Based on your Income Deduction Order/Income Withholding Order (IDO/IWO), your employer must initiate payment within 15 business days after the employer received the Notice to Payor. You are responsible for any payments that come due prior to income deduction.
The Clerk's Office has very little power when it comes to child support enforcement. The Clerk's Office will file a judgment against an obligor if the account becomes delinquent. The judgment becomes a lien against any real property owned by the individual. In private child support cases, upon the request of the obligee, the Clerk's Office will initiate an action to suspend the driver's license privileges and motor vehicle registration of delinquent obligors.
The Florida Department of Revenue (DOR) Child Support Services has an agency specifically for child support enforcement. They are located in Escambia County Florida at:2205 La VistaPensacola, FL 32504 (View a map)Phone: 850-488-KIDS (5437)
Your personal attorney can enforce your child support rights as well.
If you would like to inquire as to the date the last payment was made and the amount of the payment, you may search online at MyFloridaCounty Online Child Support Services or contact the State Disbursement Unit (SDU) at 877-769-0251. You must have your case number and social security number available.
Florida law states that child support can be reduced or increased if a substantial change has occurred. This change may occur by either the respondent or the petitioner. A hearing must be held and an order obtained for a modification. All pleadings must be filed in accordance with the Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure.
You may file a Request for Credit for Direct Payments of Child Support. Instruction and forms are available at the Clerk and Comptroller's office or online under Family Law Forms. Please note that you are only allowed to make this request one time. If you wish to continue paying directly to the other party, you will need to file a Motion to Modify the Final Judgment and have a hearing before the Court.
It is important that both parties stay informed about their child support account in order to avoid delinquencies or over payments.
If you receive your services through the Department of Revenue, Child Support Enforcement, and your payments come through their office, contact Florida Department of Revenue (DOR) at 1-850-488-5437 for direct deposit information.
For all other payments, contact the Domestic Relations Division of the Clerk's office at phone 850-595-3770, to arrange for direct deposit. They may request that you submit the Florida State Disbursement Unit (SDU) Child Support Direct Deposit Authorization Form (PDF).
Generally, the Clerk's Office accepts cash, personal check, Mastercard, and Visa for the payment of filing fees. However, the Sheriff's fee must be paid using a Business Check or Money Order payable to the "Escambia County Sheriff's Office".
You can bring your case through Small Claims Court if the amount owed does not exceed $5,000.
Any person(s) 18 years or older or any individual(s) doing business as a company may file a Small Claims case. A parent or guardian may file on behalf of a minor child. Each person who is a plaintiff in the claim must appear at the Clerk's Office to sign the complaint in the presence of a deputy clerk, or the signature must be notarized.
Please consult the fee schedule (PDF).
The paperwork needed for filing a suit in Small Claims will vary from case to case. You will need to bring three (Xerox) copies of any documentation that actually shows where the money being sued for has been expended. That could include anything from:
We do have the forms for filing your suit and information sheets explaining the process. Also, it is very important that you file your claim against the right party. The additional time you spend researching the correct name could make a difference in whether you are able to collect should a judgment be entered by the court in your favor.
If you are suing an individual doing business as a company, a partnership where there are several people doing business as a company, a corporation or an insurance company, it is important for you to research this information carefully. You can contact the Florida Secretary of State at 850-488-9000 to find out if the company is incorporated.
You must request this in your original complaint or the defendant can request a jury trial in their original answer. However, the Clerk does not assist with this procedure in any way.
Your case will be set for pretrial/mediation first, which normally is held within 50 days after your suit is filed. Any cases filed by an attorney or a bank or finance company will be set for pretrial and have the option to select mediation. All other cases filed will be set for mediation. These cases are ordered by the Court to attempt to settle the case by mediation.
Both you and the party that you are suing will sit down with a mediator to see if you can work out an agreement. If you are able to reach an agreement, that agreement will be binding and if the defendant fails to comply with the agreement you can request a judgment at that time.
If you are not able to reach an agreement or the defendant denies owing the money, the case will be referred to the Judge for a pretrial to be held. The case will then be set for a final hearing to go before the Judge to make a determination in the case.
You will be awarded a default final judgment.
The final hearing will be set in approximately six to eight weeks, depending on the Court's calendar.
You will be sent a hearing notice in the mail.
Contact the Clerk's office when you receive your notice in the mail and we will go over the procedures at that time. The fee to have a subpoena issued is $7. You will need to provide us with the name and the address of the person(s) you wish to subpoena. There is a $5 witness fee plus $0.06 cents per mile to and from the court. This fee is to be paid to the witness.
Normally, the final hearings are held in a courtroom with the litigants and their witnesses present. If the case is to be set for a jury trial, the jury trial will be held in a courtroom.
If at any time in the proceedings a settlement is reached between the parties, the plaintiff (person(s) who filed the suit) must notify the Clerk's office in writing of that settlement.
If the Judge rules on your behalf, a final judgment will be entered in your favor against the defendant(s).
A final judgment is a legal document stating that this money is owed to you. You must use the final judgment to collect your money against the defendant(s).
You may obtain a certified copy of the final judgment from the Clerk's office, service charges are required. The lien may be recorded in Official Records and will act as a lien against the other party's real property for 10 years. The lien may be extended for another 10 years, by re-recording a certified copy of the judgment and simultaneously recording an affidavit with the current address of the person who has a lien as a result of the judgment. See Section 55.10(2), Florida Statutes.
The Plaintiff may also file a Judgment Lien Certificate with the Department of State to obtain a lien on the Defendant's personal property located anywhere in Florida. The liens lapse after 5 years, but can be extended another 5 years by filing another judgment lien certificate. See Sections 55.204(1) and (3), Florida Status. Visit SunBiz for more information and forms.
The Plaintiff may ask the Clerk's Office to issue a Writ of Execution (directing the sheriff to levy on available non-exempt personal or real property of the Defendant) or Writ of Garnishment (seeking to have a portion of the Defendant's wages withheld). See Florida Rules of Civil Procedure 1.550 and 1.907; Florida Small Claims Rule 7.200; and Chapter 77, Florida Statutes. Court rules may be viewed online at the Florida Bar.
Please refer to the Florida Bar's Small claims: The who, what, where and why of collection lawsuits.
The Office of the Public Defender has prepared "What to Do If You Are Arrested..." to inform you of your rights.
At your arraignment, you will have an opportunity to complete an Affidavit of Indigent Status form, and request the appointment of a public defender. A determination of indigent status will be made by the clerk based on the information in the Affidavit. If you are determined indigent by the clerk, a public defender will be appointed and a $50 application fee will be assessed. This application fee should be paid prior to any appointments with the Public Defender and may be paid on the 2nd Floor of the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building in the County Criminal department.
For felony cases call 850-595-4150 or for misdemeanor cases call 850-595-4150 Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. for general information regarding:
Failure to appear may result in the Judge issuing a bench warrant for your arrest. You may forfeit the bail posted, thus losing your money or collateral. Upon arrest, you may be held in jail with or without bond.
To obtain information about felony trials call at 850-595-4150, for misdemeanor trials call 850-595-4150, or you may contact our Jury Office at 850-595-4350.
You may pay your court fines, fees, restitution, and other costs using either of the three methods below. However, some traffic violations require that you show proof of insurance, drivers license, or other required items before the traffic citation can be considered closed. Failure to do so may result in the suspension of the defendant's drivers license.
Yes, we accept payments for court costs, restitution (if ordered by the court), and service charges over the phone using Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. The name on the card and the name of the person authorizing payment (the caller) must be the same, unless the card is registered to a business account. A credit card processing fee will be charged for each payment made by phone.
At the conclusion of your case, pursuant to Florida Statute 903.286, the Clerk shall withhold from the return of a cash bond, posted on behalf of a criminal defendant by a person other than a bail bond agent, sufficient funds to pay any unpaid court fees, court costs, and criminal penalties. If the amount posted is greater than the fees, costs, and penalties due, the balance will be refunded to the depositor by mail, generally within ten days of the close of each case.
For more information about your bond, you may contact our office at 850-595-4150 for felony cases, at 850-595-4150 for misdemeanor cases, or visit us at the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building, County Criminal Division on the 2nd Floor.
You must petition the court, in writing, for an order releasing any evidence that was submitted as court evidence. All evidence submitted as court evidence is placed in the custody of the Clerk's Office, and cannot be released without a court order. The Clerk's Office does not provide forms for this purpose.
Civil Infractions citations are due to be paid within 30 calendar days from the date of issuance.
An indefinite suspension will be placed against the drivers license until all fines, late fees, and reinstatement fees are paid.
The Clerk's office can provide you with an official printed copy of your driver's record for a small fee.
Generally, the Clerk's Office accepts the following for the payment of filing fees and fines:
You may pay your court fines, fees, and other costs using either of the four methods below. However, some traffic violations require that you show proof of insurance, drivers license, or other required items before the traffic citation can be considered closed. Failure to do so may result in the suspension of the defendant's drivers license.
Yes, we accept payments for traffic fines, court costs, and service charges over the phone using Mastercard, Visa, Discover, and American Express. Payments may be made by calling the Clerk's Traffic Division at 850-595-4360. The name on the card and the name of the person authorizing payment (the caller) must be the same, unless the card is registered to a business account. A credit card processing fee will be charged for each payment made by phone.
For criminal traffic cases, call 850-595-4360 from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
If you are unable to pay your ticket within the 30-day timeframe, you must call the Traffic Division at 850-595-4360 to request a one-time 30-day extension to pay the fine or apply for participation in the Clerk's Partial Payment Program in order to avoid having your drivers license suspended. If the defendant elects the 30-day extension, and the ticket remains unpaid at the end of the 30 days, no further extensions will be granted and the defendant must enter the Clerk's Partial Payment Program in order to avoid suspension of the defendant's drivers license.
This election is for moving traffic citations not requiring a mandatory court appearance (i.e. speeding in excess of 30 miles per hour). You may not elect to attend driver improvement school for any violation if you hold a commercial drivers license. Consider the following:
One, no points will be assessed against your drivers license, and two, attending driver improvement school to satisfy the violation will be entered on your driver history record as an "adjudication withheld".
If you fail to meet the driver school election requirements, you will be adjudicated guilty of the offense and points will be assessed against your license.
An indefinite suspension will be placed against your drivers license until all fines, late fees, and reinstatement fees are paid. If your ticket remains unpaid 30-days from the date of your drivers license suspension, your account is turned over to a collection agency.
Once your account has been turned over to collections, you have forfeited your right to participate in the Clerk's partial payment program and you must deal directly with the collection agency for payment information and instructions.
A D-6 is a clearance form showing that you have met all court requirements and/or have paid all outstanding traffic citations. You must provide this form to DHSMV in order to have your drivers license reinstated. The Escambia County Clerk's Traffic Division can reinstate your drivers license for a fee of $47.50.
Before a final order is entered in a case, a depositor of a cash bond may seek relief from the Court for return of a forfeited cash bond. The Clerk's office provides a form motion (PDF) that can be filed with the Court to seek this relief. The Court may set a court date to hear arguments from you, the State Attorney, and the Clerk's office. The Court will decide whether the cash bond should be returned to the person who deposited the cash bond. You are responsible for providing a copy of the completed motion to the State Attorney's Office and to the General Counsel for the Escambia County Clerk of Court and Comptroller.
No. If either you or your spouse has met the residency requirement of residing in the State of Florida for at least the past six months, you may file in any county within the state. If there is any doubt in your mind or your spouse's concerning a legal question about either your right to divorce or any property rights or tax consequences, it is strongly recommended that the services of an attorney be obtained. If you do not know an attorney, you should contact the Lawyer Referral Service listed in the Yellow Pages of the telephone book. If you are financially unable to afford the service of an attorney, you should contact the Legal Aid Office in your area or ask your local bar association for a referral to an appropriate person or agency.
The Florida Bar has created a consumer information pamphlet on Divorce In Florida.
A Simplified Divorce is a simple, inexpensive means of ending a marriage for those couples who meet the eligibility requirements.
A Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage may be filed with the Clerk of Court's Family Law Division on the second floor of the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Center.
You and your spouse must come to the Clerk's Office to file the paperwork (not necessarily together). You will need to bring a form of identification that includes your picture (such as a driver's license). You will need a Certificate of Corroborating Witness, this form is included in the simplified dissolution packet, and can be signed in the presence of a notary. Forms for filing a Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage are available in the Clerk's Family Law Office for a fee.
An attorney is not required with the Simplified Dissolution procedure. If you or your spouse have any doubt in your mind regarding legal questions, you should consult with an attorney prior to filing for a Simplified Dissolution of Marriage.
The filing fees for a simplified divorce are set by Florida Statute and are subject to change as a result of new laws passed by the legislature each year. The current fees for filing a Simplified Divorce is $408 plus a $10 summons fee (please refer to the Fee Schedule (PDF).
A hearing to finalize your divorce will be scheduled at the earliest possible date dependent upon the court's schedule. There is a mandatory 20 day waiting period before a hearing can be held. You and your spouse must both appear before the court on the scheduled hearing date.
You will need to take the Final Judgment to the Clerk's Family Law Division to be filed in your case file. Your case is now final.
If, after filing for a Simplified Dissolution of Marriage, you believe your marriage can be saved and the divorce avoided, you and your spouse may file a Voluntary Dismissal to dismiss the case.
No. If either you or your spouse has met the residency requirement of residing in the State of Florida for at least the past six months, you may file in any county within the state. If there is any doubt in your mind or your spouse's concerning a legal question about either your right to divorce or any property rights or tax consequences, it is strongly recommended that the services of an attorney be obtained. If you do not know an attorney, you should contact the Lawyer Referral Service listed in the Yellow Pages of the telephone book.
If you are financially unable to afford the service of an attorney, you should contact the Legal Aid Office in your area or ask your local bar association for a referral to an appropriate person or agency.
If a member of your household has committed a crime against you resulting in your physical injury, you may have grounds to petition the court for an "Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence." This also applies if that person has only placed you in fear (either with words or physical acts), and has made you believe you would be immediately harmed by an unlawful act of violence.
This protection is available to you if that person presently resides with you as if he/she is a member of the family, or has lived together with you in the past as if they were a family member and they can be identified as:
An injunction is a court order sometimes called a "Restraining Order", that directs the person not to have any contact with you.
You can petition the court for an Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence by going to the Clerk of Court Family Law Division on the second floor of the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Center. The Clerk's Office will assist you in filing your petition and will take the file to a judge for his/her review. If the judge finds merit to the petition, he/she will enter a Temporary Order for Protection Against Domestic Violence.
You may file Domestic Violence petitions from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m, Monday through Friday at the Clerk's office. You may file Repeat Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Violence, and Stalking petitions from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m, Monday through Friday at the Clerk's Office.
If the Domestic Violence occurs after regular business hours or on weekends or holidays you may call the Escambia County Sheriff's Department at telephone number 911.
There is no filing fee for Protection against:
Having the following information available will assist you when filing for a Petition for Injunction (i.e "Restraining Order"):
As petitioner (the person filing), you will be sworn under oath as to the truthfulness of the allegations of abuse entered on your petition, under the penalty of perjury.
The court will review your petition, and based on the allegations determine to:
If the court grants the injunction:
You must provide the following information to the Clerk and Comptroller's office:
The injunction can provide such relief as the court deems proper, including:
If you want your child to be a witness, you will need to make a written request to the court to have your child testify. If the judge grants your request, you may bring the child to the hearing.
The injunction is permanent/indefinite or until modified or dismissed by the court, unless a specific time period is indicated on the first page of the injunction.
If a Domestic Violence injunction is entered against you, the law requires that all weapons be surrendered to the Sheriff's Department. There are no exceptions for hunting or other sporting events.
It is always best to consult with an attorney regarding legal matters. However, you are permitted to represent yourself in court. If you cannot afford an attorney, you may want to contact: Northwest Florida Legal Services, Inc. 24 W Government StreetPensacola, FL 32501Phone: 432-2336
The ePortal is a website that provides eFiling and eRecording capability to users with a single statewide login. Users may utilize the ePortal web interface to submit documents to Clerks and Recorders. The ePortal also supports automated interfaces with other submitter systems. The ePortal supports transmissions to/from the local case/recording systems using national XML standards. The ePortal also provides electronic notifications and service on behalf of filers.
Attorneys and pro se (self-represented) parties may register for an account to file court documents via the eFiling Portal. To register for an ePortal account, visit the Florida Courts eFiling Portal and click on "File Now" to complete the steps for registration.
For assistance with creating an account, click on the link "ePortal Documentation."
When registering, be sure the primary email address you enter on the ePortal matches the email address you have on record with the Florida Bar. Your first and last name must also match the records with the Florida Bar. You can verify your name and email address on file with the Florida Bar on the Florida Bar Website.
E-Filer Manuals and Portal FAQs. are available on the MyFlorida ePortal. An Escambia E-Filing Resource Guide (PDF) is available and periodic training sessions on e-Filing will be posted on our website.
For technical support, including password resets, contact the MyFlCourtAccess Support in Tallahassee at 850-577-4609 or send them an email. For assistance with a filing, such as an inquiry regarding a filing or a case, please contact our office.
Yes, you may file for all cases.
The only requirement will be an internet connection and a supported browser.
The ePortal will accept filings in Microsoft Word or PDF formats. Documents created with Word Perfect should be converted to PDF or Word prior to sending to the ePortal. All scanned documents must be at 300 dots per inch (DPI) and in black and white. The maximum allowable size of a document is 50 megabytes. All documents will be converted to PDF formats by the ePortal.
Documents that must be maintained in original form may be electronically filed through the Portal but must also be deposited with the Clerk and maintained for safekeeping as defined in SC11-399. Examples include:
Yes. The regular filings established by Florida law are required to be paid to file cases with Florida's courts. In addition to the filing fees, there are also convenience fees established to offset the use of electronic funds transfer, whether using a credit, charge or debit card, or and automated clearing house (ACH) transaction. The portal accepts Mastercard, Discover and American Express cards at a rate of 3%. The fee for an ACH transaction is a $3 flat fee.
Individual Florida Bar members will register to use this system and receive authentication credentials (login ID, password) upon validation of their online registration. Upon receipt of the completed Online Electronic Filing Registration, the system will verify that the attorney is admitted to practice and in good standing with The Florida Bar. A combination including but not limited to name, email and Florida Bar Number, obtained during the registration, will be validated against an electronic list provided by the Florida Bar. The attorney will be able to designate their user name and password. Email notification will be sent to the attorney at their identified email account reflecting either approval or denial of the account. The selected user name and password will enable the attorney to retrieve and file documents electronically and to receive the Notice of Electronic Filing.
The person to whom the user name and password is assigned is responsible for any documents filed using that user name and password.
The ePortal will support the following electronic notifications:
All dates and times, including when the filing is received at the ePortal and accepted/rejected by the clerk, are stored in the ePortal database to ensure the accuracy and consistency of when the event took place. An electronic filing may be submitted to the portal at any time of the day or night, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. For purposes of determining timeliness, an accepted filing shall be deemed filed on the date and time when the electronic filing is received at the ePortal.
The ePortal provides access to filings "in progress" only. Once the filing is accepted and filed in the local CMS/DMS, this becomes the official court record just like the current paper process. Original filings are retained at the portal for a brief period and then removed. Permanent access to these documents will be provided through existing methods - local websites and CCIS links.
Per AOSC04-04, filers will only be able to access cases of which they are a party of record. This access will be provided through a secured link to the existing CCIS database and links. When a county implements ICD Version 2 of CCIS, the Bar ID will be linked to each case in CCIS. When an attorney of record registers on the Portal with their Bar ID, they will be able to see any case linked to their Bar ID via a secured link to the existing CCIS database.
If the local record keeping system is down or otherwise not available, then any process that depends on the availability of the local record keeping system will not be available. Filings that are 'waiting to be filed' will continue to wait and the re-try mechanism will continue to re-try. Once the local record keeping system is back up, the filings are filed and notifications are sent.
Please refer to Section 7.0 Electronic Signatures in the Administrative Order SC09-30: Statewide Standards for Electronic Access to the Courts (PDF) for rules governing electronic signatures on court documents.
In general, a submission by a registered user is not required to bear the electronic image of the handwritten signature or an encrypted signature of the filer. Instead, the requirement of a signature on an electronically filed document may be met as follows:s/ John DoeJohn Doe (email address)Bar Number 12345Attorney for (Plaintiff/Defendant) XYZ CompanyABC Law Firm123 S StreetOrlando, FL 32800Phone: 407-123-4567
See Florida Supreme Court AOSC09-30 for more information.
In most cases, no. However, certain documents are still required to be filed with the Clerk in paper form. Please refer to Administrative Order SC11-399: E-Filing (PDF) for more information.
The Florida Court ePortal currently supports efiling by:
No, a single filing cannot apply to more than one case.
Yes, multiple pleadings on the same case can be filed simultaneously.
All filers must comply with the privacy/confidentiality provisions of Florida Rules of Judicial Administration 2420, and the prevention of unauthorized filings (minimization) provisions of Rule 2.425. These requirements apply to all documents, including attachments. If a filer who electronically files a document containing information identified as exempt from public access pursuant to Rules 2.420 and 2425, Florida Rules of Judicial Administration, the filer shall indicate that the document contains confidential or sensitive information. Documents that are exempt or claimed to be exempt from public access shall be processed pursuant to Rules 2.420 and 2.425.
The filer will be required to certify that either:
A three-day notice may be given stating the amount of rent owed and the time the rent would have covered if paid. The notice must give them three working days, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, in which to pay the rent in full or vacate the premises. If they fail to pay rent or to vacate, a suit for eviction may be started.
Please consult the Fee Schedule (PDF) for a current list of fees and costs.
A completed complaint along with five copies of the notice given to the tenant and the lease (if applicable), and a pre-stamped envelope addressed to each tenant.
The filing fees paid to the Clerk can be paid in:
However, the Sheriff's fee must be paid in Business Check or Money Order payable to the Escambia County Sheriff's Department.
A seven-day notice with cure can be given for non-compliance with the rental agreement (unauthorized people or pets, piling up trash, loud noise, etc.). If the tenant is seriously damaging the property, a seven-day notice without cure may be given.
If you are on a month to month agreement, you may give a fifteen-day notice in the middle of any month, terminating the rental agreement and asking for possession of the property after fifteen days.
A five day summons is issued to the defendant. They have five working days to respond to the Court and a hearing will be set before a judge. If they fail to respond, the landlord must come back to the Clerk's Office, complete and sign a Motion for Default, and pay $90 to the Sheriff. A twenty-four-hour notice to move will be served by the Sheriff. After the twenty-four hours has elapsed, the Sheriff will remove the tenants from the property.
Please refer to Florida Statute 715.109 on how to dispose of the property and protect yourself from liability.
You may give the landlord a written seven-day notice before the rent comes due to initiate the repairs needed or else you will be moving or withholding the rent. If the landlord fails to make the repairs, you can either move or withhold the rent. If you withhold the rent, the landlord may give a three-day notice for the rent and initiate eviction proceedings. You have the right to post the rent with the Court and have a hearing before a judge.
Please refer to Florida Statute 83 for direction, or you may want to contact an attorney.
The landlord should give a proper notice in writing to you and then the landlord should start eviction proceedings with the Court which would serve you with a summons by the Sheriff and give you an opportunity to file an answer and have a hearing before a judge.
At your arraignment, you will have an opportunity to complete an Affidavit of Indigent Status form, and request the appointment of a public defender. A determination of indigent status will be made by the clerk based on the information in the Affidavit. If you are determined indigent by the clerk, a public defender will be appointed and a $50 application fee will be assessed. This application fee should be paid prior to any appointments with the Public Defender and may be paid on the 1st Floor of the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building in the County Criminal department.
For both felony and misdemeanor cases call 850-595-4150 Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. for general information regarding:
To obtain information about felony and misdemeanor trials call at 850-595-4150, or you may contact our Jury Office at 850-595-4350.
You may pay your court fines, fees, and other costs using one of the four methods. The Clerk's office accepts American Express, Discover, Mastercard and Visa. Some traffic violations require that you show proof of insurance, drivers license, or other required items before the traffic citation can be considered closed. Failure to do so may result in the suspension of the defendant's drivers license.
Yes, we accept payments for court costs, restitution (if ordered by the court), and service charges over the phone using Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. The name on the card and the name of the person authorizing payment (the caller) must be the same, unless the card is registered to a business account. A credit card processing fee will be charged for each payment made by phone.
At the conclusion of your case, pursuant to Florida Statute 903.286, the Clerk shall withhold from the return of a cash bond, posted on behalf of a criminal defendant by a person other than a bail bond agent, sufficient funds to pay any unpaid court fees, court costs, and criminal penalties. If the amount posted is greater than the fees, costs, and penalties due, the balance will be refunded to the depositor by mail, generally within ten days of the close of each case. For more information about your bond, you may contact our office at 850-595-4150 for felony and misdemeanor cases, or visit us at the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building, County Criminal Division on the 2nd Floor.
Please refer to the information from the Florida Department of Corrections - Office of Executive Clemency at their websites:
A certified copy of the applicant's information, indictment, judgment, or sentence will be furnished by the Clerk's Office to the applicant, free of charge pursuant to Section 94004, Florida Statutes.
You may view foreclosure cases with our Case Search.
If the Court finds that the mortgagor is in default of the mortgage payments, final judgment will be issued in favor of the creditor. The final judgment sets forth the costs due to the plaintiff, such as principal charges, interest, costs of the suit, and attorney's fees.
In addition to the assessment of costs, the final judgment will list instructions for the sale of the mortgaged property at a public auction. The final judgment will include:
The creditor's attorney must file the original final judgment with the Clerk's Office, which will record the judgment. Either simultaneously with filing the judgment, or shortly after, the creditor must issue the Notice of Sale and provide proof to the Clerk's Office.
A copy of the notice must be advertised in a local newspaper authorized by law to accept legal notices. The advertisement must be published once a week for 2 consecutive weeks, and the second publication must be at least 5 days before the sale date. Before the foreclosure sale occurs, the creditor must file with the Clerk's Office an Affidavit of Publisher that proves that the sale has been properly advertised.
Yes, and this person is often referred to as a "third party bidder."
Mortgage foreclosure sales are conducted by the Clerk's office according to Section 45.031, Florida Statutes, and are held at 11 a.m, Monday through Friday unless the final judgment states otherwise. Effective June 14, 2010, most Foreclosure Sales in Escambia County, Florida will be held online via the Internet at Escambia RealForeclose pursuant to Judgment or Order of the Court and Chapter 45, Florida Statutes. By order of the court, a sale may be held in the 2nd floor lobby of the M. C. Blanchard Judicial Building. However, most sales are now conducted online.
Please refer to Foreclosure Process information located at the Escambia RealForeclose website.
The in-person sales are held in the 2nd floor lobby of the M. C. Blanchard Judicial Building, unless advertised otherwise. However, most sales are now conducted online.
Prior to the bidding, the deputy clerk conducting the sale will make any necessary announcements. It may be necessary for the Clerk to verify that you have with you the required deposit in the form of cash, money order or cashier's check before the sale begins. A description of the property may also be read at this time. Potential buyers take the property as is, subject to any defects, liens, encumbrances, and all matters of which the buyer had notice or could have obtained knowledge.
If the creditor is the successful bidder, no funds are deposited with the Clerk, unless the bid is above the amount of indebtedness. However, if a party other than the creditor is the successful bidder, an immediate deposit of 5% of the bid is required. The balance of the bid and court registry fees (3% on the first $500 and 1.5% on the balance), must be received by 5 p.m. on the day of the sale. Payment must be in the form of cash, certified check, or cashier's check payable to Pam Childers, Clerk Circuit Court - No personal checks or promissory notes.
The creditor is required to pay a mandatory sale fee of $70. The successful bidder is required to pay the documentary stamps on the Certificate of Title. If the balance is not paid by the deadline, the sale will be declared void, and a resale will be scheduled. The bidder's deposit is nonrefundable and will be used to pay for the costs of the resale, per Florida Statute 45.031(2). Any amount remaining will be applied towards the final judgment.
If no objections are filed within 10 days of the sale and all required documents and fees have been provided, the Clerk's Office will issue and record the Certificate of Title. However, if the 10th day falls on a Saturday, Sunday or Holiday, the title will be issued on the 2nd business day thereafter.
To obtain information about felony trials call at 850-595-4150, for misdemeanor trials call 850-595-4150 or you may contact our Jury Office at 850-595-4350.
You may pay your court fines, fees, restitution, and other costs using either of the three methods. However, some traffic violations require that you show proof of insurance, drivers license, or other required items before the traffic citation can be considered closed. Failure to do so may result in the suspension of the defendant's drivers license.
At the conclusion of your case, pursuant to Florida Statute 903.286, the Clerk shall withhold from the return of a cash bond, posted on behalf of a criminal defendant by a person other than a bail bond agent, sufficient funds to pay any unpaid court fees, court costs, and criminal penalties. If the amount posted is greater than the fees, costs, and penalties due, the balance will be refunded to the depositor by mail, generally within ten days of the close of each case. For more information about your bond, you may contact our office at 850-595-4150 for felony cases, at 850-595-4185 for misdemeanor cases, or visit us at the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building, County Criminal Division on the 2nd Floor.
Please refer to the information from the Florida Department of Corrections - Office of Executive Clemency at their websites listed:
A certified copy of the applicant's information, indictment, judgment, or sentence will be furnished by the Clerk's Office to the applicant, free of charge pursuant to Section 940.04, Florida Statutes.
Please refer to the information from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) at their websites listed below:
You may also contact the FDLE Expunge Section at the following address:Florida Department of Law EnforcementP.O. Box 1489Tallahassee, FL 32302-1489Attention: Expunge SectionExpunge Section Phone: 850-410-7870
Before a final order is entered in a case, a depositor of a cash bond may seek relief from the Court for return of a forfeited cash bond. The Clerk's office provides a form motion that can be filed with the Court to seek this relief. The Court may set a court date to hear arguments from you, the State Attorney, and the Clerk's office. The Court will decide whether the cash bond should be returned to the person who deposited the cash bond. You are responsible for providing a copy of the completed motion to the State Attorney's Office and to the General Counsel for the Escambia County Clerk of Court and Comptroller.
Access the form motion (PDF).
Under Article VIII, Section 1(d), of the Constitution of the State of Florida, the Clerk of the Circuit Court serves as auditor and custodian of all county funds for the Escambia County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC). In Escambia County, the Clerk of the Circuit Court (Clerk), an elected Constitutional Officer is the County's Internal Auditor. The Florida Supreme Court has ruled that the Clerk of the Circuit Court has the right to perform all auditing functions, including financial and performance audits. The Clerk has delegated responsibility for the management of the internal audit function to his appointed Administrator for Financial Services and the function is coordinated through the Clerk's Finance Department. All internal audit functions are reviewed and approved by the Clerk.
The federal government and the state of Florida have implemented laws and regulations affecting Escambia County. In addition, the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) has established policies and procedures for county management to follow in serving the citizens of Escambia County. Further, the BOCC has entered into contracts and agreements and expended public funds to provide these services and purchase assets. The internal auditing process conducts financial, compliance, operational, and performance audits intended to improve the effectiveness of governance, risk management and control processes within the Escambia County government. This audit function, in addition to evaluating these areas, results in recommendations for improvement.
To that end, by conducting limited scope and continuous audits of departments, functions, and activities internal audit helps ensure that the County is fulfilling its fiduciary responsibilities to its citizens and taxpayers.
Independence is paramount in performing the internal audit function since it provides for an atmosphere for objective and uninhibited appraisal. The Clerk, as an elected official, is independent of the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC). By maintaining independence in the process, an objective assurance adds value and improves operations, thereby preserving public trust. Depending on the scope of the internal audit or performance review, the Clerk either utilizes highly qualified internal staff or contracts with an outside Certified Public Accountant (CPA) firm.
Audit work papers are considered confidential until the audit report is made public (Florida Statute 119.07 Public Records, was amended by Chapter 95-399, dated June 18, 1995). Upon presentation at the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) meeting, the audit report is considered final and becomes a public document, available to the media and the general public. Audit reports are posted on the Clerk's website, Internal Auditor page.
Chapter 397 of the Florida Statutes is know as the "Hal S. Marchman Alcohol and Other Drug Services Act of 1993". It provides for the involuntary or voluntary assessment and stabilization of a person allegedly abusing substances like drugs or alcohol, and provides for treatment of substance abuse.
A voluntary admission occurs when a person seeks treatment for substance abuse and applies to a service provider to receive such treatment.
An involuntary admission occurs when there is good faith reason to believe the person is substance abuse impaired, and because of such impairment, the person has:
All substance abuse petitions in Escambia County Florida are initiated through Baptist Hospital - Lakeview Center located at:1221 W Lakeview AvenuePensacola, FL 32501
The petition may be filed by:
For a minor, the petition may be filed by a parent, legal guardian, legal custodian, or licensed service provider. The petitioner must have recently observed the behavior of the person who is the subject of the petition.
The Marchman Act can be found in Chapter 397 of the Florida Statutes.
Certified copies of marriage licenses can be obtained from our Public Records Center, between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.
The individual must be at least 18 years of age.
Per 741.04, F.S. Issuance of marriage license, with the effect of prohibiting a county court judge or Clerk of Court from issuing a marriage license to a person under the age of 18. However, a person that is at least 17 years of age may marry with written parental or legal guardian consent, but only if the other party is no more than two years older:
If both applicants are not a resident of the State of Florida, then no waiting period is required. If either applicant is a resident of the State of Florida, then Florida does require a three day waiting period from the date you apply for your license. If both applicants have taken a premarital preparation course within one year prior to applying for their marriage license, from a course provider registered with the Clerk of Courts in Florida the waiting period will then be waived.
Example for the three day waiting period:
The State of Florida does not require a blood test.
The following can perform ceremonies:
No. The license is valid only in Florida and you must be married in the State of Florida.
A Marriage License must be used within 60 days from the effective date. The effective date is located on your license.
Yes. Both applicants must read and make a sworn affidavit that they have read the Family Law Handbook created by the Family Law Section of the Florida Bar.
No. Non-Florida residents and individuals who are not citizens of the United States of America may apply for a marriage license F.S. 741.04. Any person who is not a citizen of the United States, and has not been issued a social security number or an alien with a registration number, is encouraged to provide another form of identification such as a passport or visa.
Witnesses are not required in the State of Florida.
Per F.S. 74121, A man person may not marry any woman person he/she is related by lineal consanguinity, nor his/her sister sibling, nor his/her aunt/uncle, nor his/her niece/nephew. A woman person may not marry any man to whom she is related by lineal consanguinity, nor his/her brother, nor his/her uncle, nor his/her nephew.
Yes. Additionally, the Clerk's office performs ceremonies for an additional charge of $30.
For information concerning the Baker Act, please visit our Baker Act section.
For information concerning the Marchman Act, please visit our Marchman Act section.
For more information concerning the Adult Protective Services, please visit the Department of Children and Families (DCFS) Adult Services.
At the conclusion of your case, pursuant to Florida Statute 903.286, the Clerk shall withhold from the return of a cash bond, posted on behalf of a criminal defendant by a person other than a bail bond agent, sufficient funds to pay any unpaid court fees, court costs, and criminal penalties. If the amount posted is greater than the fees, costs, and penalties due, the balance will be refunded to the depositor by mail, generally within ten days of the close of each case. For more information about your bond, you may contact our office at 850-595-4150 for felony cases, at 850-595-4150 for misdemeanor cases, or visit us at the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building, County Criminal Division on the 2nd Floor.
All of our records are by property owner name. If you do not have the name of the property owner, but do have the location or the legal description of the piece of property, please contact the Escambia County Florida Property Appraiser's Office.
The Clerk's Official Records Division can provide you with a certified copy of your deed which will be as good as the original. A per page fee and a certification fee is charged.
You will need to have a new deed prepared. This can be done by an attorney or you can do it yourself. This office cannot prepare the deed for you. You can purchase a deed form from any of the area office supply stores. The deed will need to be signed by the grantor in the presence of a notary and two witnesses.
Once you have completed the form properly, you should bring the deed into the Clerk's office for recording into the public records.
Please consult the current fee schedule for changes. The current recording fee is $10 for the first page and $8.50 for each additional page, plus Documentary Stamps are required at $0.70 per $100 based on the purchase price or the consideration. If there is a mortgage being assumed, additional stamps at the rate of $0.35 per $100 on the balance of the mortgage being assumed will also be required.
A new deed will need to be prepared from the ex-spouse whose name is being taken off of the deed, to the ex-spouse who is getting the property.
No. The original deed with the original signatures is necessary for recording.
A certified copy of the death certificate must be recorded. If the person died in the State of Florida, a certified copy must be obtained from the State Health Department without the cause of death. If the person died in a state other than Florida, we can record a certified copy with the cause of death.
No. We cannot record an altered copy. The certified copy must come from the Health Department without the cause of death. Please specify to the Health Department that you need this certified copy for recording purposes.
The documentary stamps paid on the deed will indicate the purchase price of the property. To calculate the purchase price, divide the total amount of documentary stamps paid by the tax rate for that particular year per hundred dollars.
Currently, parking violations in Escambia County are:
Parking Violations issued in Escambia County (not within the City of Pensacola) are due within 7 calendar days from the date of issuance.
A delinquent fee will be assessed against you and the unpaid parking violation will be turned over to a collection agency, thereby adding up to an additional 40% fee. After three or more unpaid parking violations, your drivers license may be suspended.
Upon receipt of a parking violation, you have 7 days from the date of issuance of the parking violation to exercise any of one of two options:
Contact the Clerk's Office Traffic Division at 850-595-4360 for additional information.
You may pay your court fines, fees, and other costs using either of the four methods
Generally, the Clerk's Office accepts cash, personal check, Mastercard, and Visa for the payment of filing fees and fines.
Yes, we accept payments for traffic fines, court costs, and service charges over the phone using Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. Payments may be made by calling the Clerk’s Traffic Division at 850-595-4360. The name on the card and the name of the person authorizing payment (the caller) must be the same, unless the card is registered to a business account. A credit card processing fee will be charged for each payment made by phone.
A D-6 is a clearance form showing that you have met all court requirements and/or have paid all outstanding traffic citations. You must provide this form to DHSMV in order to have your drivers license reinstated. The Escambia County Clerk's Traffic Division can reinstate your drivers license for a fee.
Traffic Infractions, Criminal Traffic, Misdemeanor, and Felony cases qualify for a payment plan.
For Traffic Infraction cases, a payment plan will only be accepted within 30 days from the issue date of the citation. For Criminal Traffic, Misdemeanor, and Felony cases, a payment plan may be entered into at any time after court costs/fines have been assessed.
For Traffic Infraction cases, payment plans will only be established for a 90-day period. Therefore, the minimum monthly payment will be one-third of the fine amount. For Criminal Traffic and Misdemeanor cases, the minimum monthly payment is $50. For Felony cases, the minimum monthly payment is $75.
Upon entering into a payment plan, a suspension clearance letter will be issued for your driver's license, as long as all other ticket requirements have been met (i.e, proof of insurance, proof of valid driver's license, proof of registration).
Each case will be assessed a $25 one-time administrative processing charge to establish the plan, which must be paid before entering into the plan. In addition, if a driver's license suspension clearance letter is required, the required fee must be paid before entering into the payment plan.
Yes. Multiple cases may be consolidated into a stacked payment plan.
Payments will be applied to the newest case first until it is paid in full. The payments will then be applied to the next case in order until all cases are paid in full.
A payment plan will be defaulted if the monthly payment is not paid within 5 days of the due date. Once a plan has been defaulted, a financial obligation suspension of your driver's license will be processed on the case. In order to clear the suspension, all court-related fees, service charges, costs, and fines must be paid in full on the defaulted case. If you default on a stacked payment plan, you will be defaulted in all cases. Once a payment plan has been defaulted you will not be allowed to enter into an additional payment plan on that case.
Call the Clerk's Collections Division, at 850-595-4067, before the due date to discuss payment arrangements.
Complete the Payment Plan Application, bring your completed form, identification and required fees ($25 administrative fee and $7 clearance letter fee, if applicable) to the Collections Division for processing.
Your first payment will be due 30 days from the date of the signed agreement.
Yes. If you live out of town, you can mail your application to our office. Once your application has been received, we will prepare and send you a Payment Plan Agreement which will need to be signed before a notary public. The notarized agreement and required fees must be received before the plan will become effective and a driver's license clearance letter issued (if applicable).
Mailing AddressClerk of the Circuit CourtCollections DivisionP.O. Box 333Pensacola, FL 32591- 0333
A will is a document executed by a person which disposes of his/her property after his/her death. A will generally names a personal representative to administer the estate. After the death of the person, the custodian of the will must deposit the will with the Clerk of the Circuit Court, within ten days after receiving information that the person is deceased. The custodian should supply the person's date of death or the person's social security number to the Clerk upon deposit of the will, if this information is available.
The original copy of the will should be kept in a safe, secure place and should be accessible by your designated personal representative after your death.
No. An attorney is not necessary to deposit the will with the Clerk of the Circuit Court. However, you may want to consult with an attorney before filing so that he or she may determine whether Probate proceedings will be necessary.
There are three basic types of proceedings for administering the decedent's estate:
This type of proceeding is used when it is necessary to appoint a personal representative to act on behalf of the estate because there are considerable assets or other special circumstances. The capacity in which the representative will act is determined by the Court at the time of the appointment and letters of administration will be issued to the representative so that he/she may complete the administration of the estate.
Summary administration may be filed when the value of the entire estate does not exceed $75,000.
The disposition is filed to request release of assets of the deceased to the person who paid the final expenses; such as funeral bills or medical bills for the last 60 days. This procedure may be accomplished with the filing of a petition. The form required to file the disposition is available from the Clerk of Circuit Court in the Probate Division. This cannot include real property.
Note: The asset cannot exceed the amount of the final expenses.
The property will be distributed in accordance with the Florida Statutes.
It will be necessary for an attorney to petition the Court to appoint a personal representative to administer the estate.
Probate proceedings are initiated with the filing of a Petition by an interested person asking to be appointed personal representative and/or distribute property depending on size and complexity of property. The Petition is normally prepared by an attorney. The appointed person will be responsible for the estate until all bills are paid and the balance of the estate is distributed to the rightful beneficiaries.
The following must be provided:
If the Court is satisfied that this proceeding is applicable, the Court, by letter or other writing under the seal of the court, may authorize the payment, transfer, or disposition of the personal property, belonging to the decedent to those persons entitled. The Clerk of Court, Probate Division, would suggest that you call in advance of your trip to the Probate Office. This will afford us an opportunity to discuss the required items, possibly avoiding an unnecessary trip or delay to the petitioner(s).
At this time, the Florida Supreme Court does not allow public internet access for viewing imaged court documents. Images of probate court documents are available for viewing at any of the Clerk's locations on the public view terminals. Our staff will be happy to demonstrate if you should need assistance. The paper documents filed in the probate court files are available for viewing at the M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building location. If you would like to view a file, it is advisable to call ahead to be sure the file is available, and has not been sent to the court or to another office.
You may also order, by telephone or email, copies of any document not sealed by Florida Statute, Probate Rule, Administrative Order or Court Order. The copies will be mailed to you upon receipt of the service fee and postage.
Property fraud can occur when someone records a fraudulent document in the Official Records, and unlawfully transfers the ownership of property to someone else. According to the FBI, property fraud is one of the fastest growing white-collar crimes in the United States. This fraudulent activity can often go undetected and can be very difficult to reverse, causing a number of legal issues for the property owner.
To register the name William John Smith, Jr.
WILLIAM JOHN SMITH, JR. AS TRUSTEE
WILLIAM JOHN SMITH, JR. TRUST
THE WILLIAM JOHN AND SUSAN JANE SMITH REVOCABLE TRUST AGREEMENT
WILLIAM JOHN SMITH, JR., ATTORNEY IN FACT
Suffixes, such as Jr., III, etc. go after the name entered first name block.
Titles, such Personal Representative or Attorney in Fact (see abbreviations list) go after any suffixes in the first name block.
Business Names are indexed exactly as they appear on the document (see abbreviations list).
Do not use punctuation.
When “THE” appears at the beginning of a name, do not index as part of the name.
Common abbreviations list:
The Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller must record all documents that meet the requirements outlined in the Florida Statues.
Check the Official Records using the Records Search to see what documents are recorded under your name and sign up for Escambia County Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller's free Recording Notification Service for automated email alerts when your name is added to the Official Records index.
Click here to register to receive e-mail alerts when documents are recorded that include certain names in the Official Records for Escambia County. This subscription is free of charge to you, and can be modified or cancelled at any time. You only need to provide your first and last name, and an email address. Since there is no way to distinguish between multiple people with the same name, you may receive alerts for documents recorded with the same name, but are not related to your property. You may view the document recorded using our online Official Records Search. It is also recommended that you register ALL POSSIBLE variations of your name, including middle name, middle initial, nick names, suffixes, etc. You will only receive notifications of recordings for the exact name(s) registered. **Please note, this registration will only send alerts for documents recorded in Escambia County, Florida. If you own property in another county or state, you should contact the Recording Office for that county to see if they offer such service.
Act quickly! If you receive an alert that a document has been recorded that matches your monitoring criteria, you will need to view the actual document on our Online Official Records Search web page to confirm whether or not this document is for your property. If you suspect that you are a victim of fraud, contact the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office or Pensacola Police Department immediately. You may consider seeking legal advice from an attorney for additional guidance.
No document can be removed from the Official Records without a court order. Therefore, citizens are urged to contact local law enforcement and/or an attorney for prompt, appropriate action of fraud is suspected.
Contact the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office or Pensacola Police Department, and/or your attorney or legal advisor. Neither the Clerk of the Circuit Court & Comptroller, Property Appraiser, or Tax Collector offices can take legal action on your behalf to reverse the fraudulent activity.
Yes. To unsubscribe from this service please visit the Recording Activity Notification Registration site and click on “Receive Email to Edit Recording Activity Notification.”
Yes. Florida has a very broad public records law. Email addresses and names used in registrations for the Recording Notification Service are subject to public disclosure per Florida law.
No. You will only receive notifications of recordings for the exact name(s) registered.
Yes. To edit the names you are monitoring, you must first unsubscribe from the Recording Notification Service by selecting the “Unsubscribe” link on the Recording Notification Service page. You may then re-subscribe with the new list of names.
No. The property Notification Service is offered free of charge.
The Clerk shall not be liable for any loss, cost, damage, or expense arising directly or indirectly in connection with this service. In no event shall the Clerk be liable for any damages from the use, receipt, or application of the information accessed from this free service. This free service does not protect against fraud. The Property Notification Service simply provides notifications about instruments recorded in the Official Records. The Clerk may terminate this service, or any individual subscription, at any time without notification. No duty of care is created or owed to individual persons from the operation of this service.
You may be able to file a replevin action at the Clerk's office.
You will need three copies of the following:
Please consult the fee schedule (PDF). Currently, the filing fee should be:
Additional fees may include:
Your case will be set for a hearing to go before a judge. An Order To Show Cause will be issued and served on the defendant, notifying him/her of the action and the date of the hearing. You will also be notified of the hearing date.
The Judge will review the evidence, hear testimony, and make a determination if the property should be returned to you, the plaintiff, or if the property should remain in the possession of the defendant.
If the Judge orders that the property should be returned to you and the defendant does not willingly return the property, you will need to request that the Writ of Replevin be issued and served on the defendant. The Sheriff will then put you in possession of the property.
The Tourist Development Tax (TDT) is a 5% tax on the total payment received for the rental or lease of living quarters and accommodations in a:
Learn about the authority of these guidelines.
The guest pays the tax to you and you in turn report and remit the tax collected to the proper tax authorities.
The person/entity receiving consideration for the lease or rental of the above-mentioned facilities has the responsibility to collect the TDT from their tenants or guests and remit them to the Escambia County Clerk of the Circuit Court's Finance Office.
Generally speaking, anything your guest is required to pay to rent the property is taxable. Examples include, but are not limited to:
Deposits and taxes collected should not be included in the gross rental receipts.
Tax reports may be submitted online. The online filing system will calculate your taxes and once submitted you can print and mail your payments.
These taxes are remitted to the Escambia County Clerk of Court depending upon the taxpayer's reporting period. This period may be monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, or annually; consistent with your filing status with the Florida Department of Revenue. These taxes are due on the first of the month following the month of collection from tenants and guests, and are considered delinquent if not postmarked by the 20th of the month. Dealers must file a tax return based on their reporting period, even if no rental receipts were collected during that period. View the Escambia County return form and instructions (PDF).
If the TDT return is postmarked on or before the 20th of the month following the collection month, a collection allowance is kept by you as compensation for collecting the tax. The collection allowance is 2.5% of the first $1,200 of taxes collected up to a maximum of $30. Beginning January 1, 2013, returns and payments must be filed electronically to qualify for you to be eligible for a collection allowance.
If a property manager handles your property, the property manager may have their own TDT account and will submit the TDT payments on your behalf by a unit reporting return. You should verify this with your property manager. Unit reporting provides an itemized list of all properties and rental amounts collected each month. However, you should be aware that as the property owner, you are ultimately responsible for the payment of the taxes. Any failure by your property manager to pay the tax may result in penalties being applied against you, as the property owner.
If a property manager handles your property, but you also directly rent the property yourself, you are responsible for submitting TDT returns for the taxes you collect from these rentals. You will need an individual TDT account on which to report these rentals.
Throughout the year, you should update your property list using this Add/Delete/Change Form (PDF) and email it to us. Additions should be emailed as soon as possible, but no later than 12 noon Central Standard Time on the 17th for the month the tax report is due. Deletions should be emailed after the final report has been made for the property being deleted. Information required when updating your PML includes the property:
Returns, along with the payment, must be filed each filing period by the 20th of each month even if there is no income to report. Late reports are subject to the loss of the collection allowance, interest, and penalties. Penalties are assessed at the rate of 10% of the taxes due for every 30 days or fraction thereof up to a maximum of 50% of the taxes due or $50 whichever is greater.
The charge for a dishonored check is based on the current rate established by Escambia County Ordinance/Resolution and/or Florida Statutes. Also, the collection allowance will be disallowed and penalties and interest will be assessed at the stated rates if payment is not received on or before the delinquent date of the month in which the tax is due. Excessive returned checks will result in the requirements to submit future tax, penalty and interest payments in cash or by money order.
All TDT records must be retained for five years and made available for an audit at the place of business, within Escambia. Records shall include, but not be limited to:
After June 1, 2006, all tourist development taxes on Navarre Beach property is payable directly to Santa Rosa County.
The TDT return is due on the 1st of the following calendar month and must be postmarked on or before the 20th of the following calendar month for which the liability applies (June rental is due July 1 must be postmarked by July 20th).
Per Florida Statutes, you must file a return even though no monies were collected (a zero return).
According to Florida Statute 212 transient accommodations means any living quarters or sleeping accommodations in any:
For a more definitive listing please review the statute.
As addressed in Florida Statutes Chapter 196.061: The rental of an entire dwelling previously claimed to be a homestead for tax purposes shall constitute the abandonment of said dwelling as a homestead, and said abandonment shall continue until such dwelling is physically occupied by the owner hereof. However, such abandonment of such homestead after January 2 of any year shall not affect the homestead exemption for tax purposes for that particular year so long as this provision is not used for 2 consecutive years.
Transient rentals (short-term rentals) apply to rentals, leases, etc. of a period of time up to six months. These short-term rental owners must collect and remit taxes. Any person who exclusively enters into a bona-fide written lease for a period of six months or longer does not have to remit these taxes and does not need to register with the Escambia County Clerk's Finance Department.
If a tax exemption certificate were presented at the time of rental, the individual or company, etc. would be exempt. It is important that the owner make a copy of this exemption to keep for their records. If a person continuously resides at one location for a period longer than six months, that person is exempt. Other examples include:
Please refer to Florida Statute 212 for a more detailed explanation of exemptions.
The collection allowance lets the taxpayer keep a portion of the money that must be remitted for submitting the return in a timely manner. The collection allowance is 2.5% of total tax due up to $30, if the return is postmarked by the 20th of the month following collection. Beginning January 1, 2013, returns and payments must be filed electronically to qualify for you to be eligible for a collection allowance.
Your agent may collect taxes and remit returns on your behalf. Even though there is a written agreement between the property owner and the agent, the property owner still remains responsible for the tax obligation if the agent fails to collect and remit these taxes.
Escambia County, per Florida Statutes 125 and 212 and Escambia County Ordinance 98-39, is a self-administering County of the tourist development plan and fund. This means that instead of the taxpayer remitting all taxes directly to the Florida Department of Revenue (FDOR) which in turn remits monies back to the County, that portion should be remitted directly to the County.
Per Florida Statutes 125 and 212, and Escambia County Ordinances 1989-7, 1992-30, and 2003-11 allow Escambia County to use these tax monies to acquire, construct, improve, etc. publicly owned and operated convention centers, sports stadiums or arenas. Monies are used to promote and advertise tourism. Monies may be used to fund convention bureaus, tourist information centers, etc. Monies also may be used in beach improvement, maintenance, restoration, etc. For more information please review the statutes.
If your short-term rental property is located in Escambia County, you must collect 7.5% for the State Sales Tax and 5% for Escambia County's TDT.
Per Florida Statutes 125 and 212 and Escambia County Ordinance 89-7, the County is responsible for collection and administration of the tax and allows Escambia County to collect information it deems reasonable and necessary. Part of the information required by Escambia County, is information on the individual's or company's bank account (please review registration form (PDF)).
If cleaning fees, processing fees, amenities fees or other fees appear on the guest's bill and are a required fee for the use of the accommodation, then "yes", those fees should be considered taxable for both State and County tax rates.
Per Florida Statute Section 213053, the details of taxpayer information is exempt from public records requests. However, the County is allowed to exchange information regarding taxpayers and businesses with the State of Florida Department of Revenue.
All records that substantiate all of the transient rental sales must be kept for a period not less than five years from the date the return was field or was required to be filed, whichever is later, these include, but not limited to:
Transient rental sales and activity are subject to tax audits. Documents referenced above are a sample of the documents necessary to perform a thorough audit. The Clerk of the Circuit Court Treasury Audit Division will send written notification of an audit. This notification will be submitted at least 30 days prior to any audit.
The owner or operator must make the records available at the rental location or place of business in Escambia County. If the records are not immediately available in Escambia County, the owner or operator must return the records to Escambia County at their own expense so the auditor can examine the records during the audit. The party responsible for the taxes may be assessed additional taxes, penalties and interest if the records do not comply with the laws and ordinances of the State and County.
Traffic Infraction citations are due to be paid within 30 calendar days from the date of issuance.
If you are unable to pay your ticket in full within the first 30 days, you may apply for a Payment Plan, or request a one-time 30 day extension to pay the fine. If a 30 day extension is received, and the ticket remains unpaid at the end of the 30 days, no further extensions will be granted and the defendant's driver's license will be suspended, costs will be assessed and the balance due may be referred to Collections. Once a notice has been sent to Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) to suspend, the balance due must be paid in full to obtain a clearance letter.
While a law enforcement officer may tell you a fine amount for a particular violation, the final amount is determined by Florida Statutes, county and city ordinances which may vary from what the officer writes on the ticket. View a list of fines and costs for various traffic offenses (PDF).
The Clerk's Office cannot offer advice concerning the number of points assessed against your license, how those points affect your license, or how the points will affect your insurance. You must address these concerns with the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) and/or your insurance agency.
Please visit the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles to verify the status of your driver's license.
With a photo ID, you can obtain a 3 year driving history for $14.25. DUI offenses requiring lifetime records are $16.25.
There are two benefits associated with attending the Basic Driver Improvement Course:
If you hold a commercial drivers license (CDL) or commercial license, you are not eligible to attend the school.
Payment must be made in the county where the ticket was issued.
You may make an election to attend a Basic Driver Improvement Course, for eligible violations, one time in a 12 month period. No more than 5 elections may be made in a lifetime.
Yes. Once the affidavit is signed and recorded by the court it counts as one of your elections. You may not choose the school option again for 12 months and all payments are forfeited regardless of whether you follow through and attend the school.
Yes. The costs for the Basic Driver Improvement Course vary depending on which course you choose to attend. You have to check with the individual course providers to determine the costs.
In certain cases the Clerk's Office may be able to reinstate your license for $60. If the Clerk's Office is unable to reinstate your license you will be provided with the necessary paperwork to present to the Tax Collector's Office for reinstatement.
Please contact the City of Pensacola Downtown Parking Management District at 850-434-5372 for payment locations.
The Clerk's Office accepts cash, personal check, money order and credit card (Mastercard, Visa, Discover, and American Express) for the payment of filing fees and fines. Credit card payments will incur an additional 3.5% service charge on the payment.
You may pay your court fines, fees, and other costs by using any of the following methods. However, some traffic violations require that you show proof of insurance, driver's license, or other required items before the traffic citation can be considered closed. Failure to do so may result in the suspension of the defendant's driver's license.
Please contact the Office of State Attorney for more information.