M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building
190 Governmental Center, Sixth Floor
Pensacola, FL 32502
This is intended as a brief overview of procedures in an effort to assist parties handling cases before Judge Brodersen. Should you have any additional questions not addressed in the overview, please contact the Judicial Assistant, Michelle Gibbs at (850) 595-4420 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Division “III” in Escambia County is a County Criminal and County Civil division. Division III also handles Domestic Violence Injunction cases in Division “DV” on a rotating basis. Division III does not handle small claims or eviction cases.
The Code of Judicial Conduct precludes judicial assistants from making substantive inquiries of the judge on behalf of any attorney or litigant involved in any action. The Code prohibits all judges from considering ex parte (one side only) communications.
Judicial Assistants are neither qualified nor able to provide legal advice to anyone. However, they are more than happy to assist, or Judicial Assistants may assist with procedural and scheduling inquiries only.
Any issue to be considered by a judge should be in the form of a motion filed with the Clerk of Court with copies provided to all parties of record. It is the responsibility of the moving party to set the motion for hearing.
To schedule a hearing, please send an email to the judicial assistant, Michelle Gibbs, at email@example.com copying all counsel of record or by calling (850) 595-4420. Hearing requests are processed in the order in which they are received. Please include the following information in the email or have ready when scheduling by phone: the case number, the title of the motion to be heard and the amount of time needed for the hearing. Once all parties have agreed and confirmed the date and time of the hearing with the judicial assistant, the party seeking the hearing is to prepare and file a Notice of Hearing.
Case law for consideration at a motion hearing should be provided at least five (5) days prior to the scheduled hearing to the judicial assistant via email or hand delivery.
No additional motions should be added to the existing hearing time without first coordinating this request with the judicial assistant and other counsel/parties.
Parties and/or counsel should make their request to appear telephonically at the time the hearing is being coordinated by email/telephone. Please provide a toll-free number, if available, for the Court to initiate the call at the appropriate time. If a toll-free number is not provided, the party appearing telephonically must call the judicial assistant at (850) 595-4420 in order to be transferred to the appropriate court room/chambers, at the time of the scheduled hearing. If more than one party wishes to appear by telephone, those parties must conference in together before calling the judge’s office or conference in before the judge calls the toll-free number.
Please note: if a hearing is scheduled for fifteen (15) minutes or less, there is no need to file a motion/order for the telephonic appearance. If the hearing is scheduled for more than fifteen (15) minutes, a motion/order must be filed.
If it is determined a scheduled hearing is no longer necessary, please notify the judge’s office immediately, preferably by email. A Notice of Cancellation will need to be filed with the Clerk’s office and a courtesy copy should be emailed to the judicial assistant.
If an attorney or the Defendant requests that the original date be reset for good cause, the date may be moved within the same week. Any requests to reset an arraignment date or traffic appearance outside of Arraignment week must be submitted in writing accompanied by documentation supporting the reason for the request, with copies provided to the State Attorney. Requests and supporting documents may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or faxed to (850) 595-4422. After review, the requesting party will be contacted with a decision.
PLEA DAY/MOTIONS TO CONTINUE
If a case has been set for plea day, a jury or judge trial, or a hearing on a motion, a written Motion to Continue will be required in order to continue the proceeding in advance of the scheduled court date and avoid the parties being required to appear in Court. The Motion should contain a statement that the moving party has consulted with the parties of record and state whether or not the parties have an objection to the request. Motions to Continue should be filed at least two (2) business days prior to the scheduled date and be accompanied by a Proposed Order. The Proposed Order should contain the correct reset dates.
Any party requesting a reset or continuance in advance of the scheduled date should plan to appear in Court unless or until the Judge's office provides confirmation that the matter has been reset or continued.
Counsel may file a Waiver of Appearance for his/her client for pretrial matters. Any request to waive an appearance of the Defendant should be in writing and filed at least two (2) business days prior to the scheduled hearing date.
SUBMITTING MOTIONS AND SCHEDULING HEARINGS
Any matter to be considered by the Court should be in the form of a motion filed with the Clerk of Court. Copies should be provided to all parties of record and to the Court by email to email@example.com. The moving party is responsible for coordinating a hearing with opposing counsel and the Court after the motion has been filed and copied to all the parties. Merely filing a motion will not bring the matter before the Court.
Moving counsel should contact the Judge's office and request available hearing dates. Counsel should be prepared to provide the style of the case and case number, the type of hearing to be scheduled, the names of the attorneys involved, and the amount of time that will be needed for the hearing. After a hearing date has been coordinated with all parties, the moving party should notify the Judge's Office so that the hearing can be placed on the Court's calendar. A hearing date is not finalized until confirmation is received from the Court's Judicial Assistant.
Generally, the Court has two hearing dates designated for criminal motions during each trial cycle. Motions that require witness testimony will be scheduled no less than ten (10) days out to allow time for subpoena service. New motions may not be added onto hearings for previously scheduled motions in the same case unless this has been cleared with opposing counsel and the Court. The Court will not hear motions which have not been properly scheduled. Case law should be provided at least forty-eight (48) hours prior to a hearing on the motion. All pretrial motions should be heard prior to jury selection absent a showing of good cause.
A hearing may not be necessary if the motion is stipulated. These matters can be expedited if moving party states within the motion that the parties have conferred and agree to the entry of the order.
If a Motion that has been set for hearing is to be withdrawn, conceded, or continued, the Judge's office should be notified as soon as is practical. Written Notice of Cancellation or Notice Withdrawing the Motion will be necessary and may be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
PROPOSED ORDERS/ JUDGMENTS
Effective January 1, 2015, the Clerk’s office no longer accepts proposed orders through the Florida Court E-filing Portal. Please email all proposed orders/judgments, in Microsoft Word format, to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org, coping all parties. If a case involves pro se parties without designated email addresses, please include the mailing address on the proposed order/judgment, in order to ensure proper distribution of conformed copies.
Please continue to file all other pleadings/motions with the Clerk of Court. Courtesy copies are welcome with the emailed proposed orders/judgments; however, any courtesy copies furnished for the Judge should be submitted only as a copy of the documents filed with the Clerk’s office and should include the electronic filing number, date and time stamp.
Pretrial conferences are scheduled through the Judge's office upon request only. The party wishing to schedule a pretrial conference must contact the Judge's Judicial Assistant for available dates and times and coordinate the conference with opposing counsel. The Defendant's appearance is not mandatory, if waived in writing by the Defendant.
FAILURES TO APPEAR
All warrants issued for a Failure to Appear will remain outstanding until an appearance is made by the Defendant before the Court or via his or her attorney, unless the warrant is set aside or recalled for sufficient reason, as determined by the Judge.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE INJUNCTIONS
Please contact the Domestic Violence Coordinators at (850) 595-4492 or (850) 595-4498 for any and all matters involving hearings on domestic violence, repeat violence, dating violence, sexual violence or stalking injunctions.