M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building
190 Governmental Center - 5th Floor
Pensacola, Florida 32502
Foreclosure Case Manager: Patty Barber
Phone: (850) 595-4398
Guidelines to Attorneys/Pro se parties Appearing Before Magistrate Keith A. McIver
- Within 5 days of scheduling a hearing before the Magistrate, send a copy of the Notice of Hearing. Please see Florida Family Law Rule of Procedure 12.490(d)(4) for the proper form of the Notice. If the notice is not received, the hearing is subject to cancellation by the Magistrate. If the relief requested is for temporary relief in a family law action and temporary relief has been specifically plead in the underlying pleading, a separate motion is unnecessary. However, in such case, the Notice of Hearing must specifically state all elements of requested relief such as temporary alimony, temporary child support, etc. Prior to the scheduled hearing, please ensure that all applicable provisions of Florida Family Law Rule of Procedure 12.285 have been met.
- Advise the Magistrate as soon as possible of any resolution allowing the cancellation of the hearing. If the hearing is cancelled for any reason other than the issue being settled, please advise the Magistrate's office of the reason. Failure to provide immediate notice to the General Magistrate's office of the cancellation means that your hearing time cannot be given to others needing to advance their case. A Notice of Cancellation of Hearing shall be filed with the Clerk and a copy emailed to the Magistrate.
- It is the responsibility of the attorneys/parties setting a hearing to advise the Magistrate's office of any timely objection to the Order of Referral which cancels the hearing.
- If a party desires to use communication equipment, please be familiar with Florida Judicial Administration Rule 2.530 and its differences between telephonic participation and telephonic testimony. Requests to proceed under Rule 2.530, whether stipulated or not, must be presented to the Magistrate by Motion a reasonable amount of time before the scheduled hearing. The motion must state the position of the other party or parties. Unless otherwise contacted by the Magistrate, any objection shall be heard at the time of the hearing. If you have received prior permission for someone to appear at a hearing by telephone, please telephone the Magistrate's office the day before the hearing to remind us. The person appearing by telephone should call in to our office at the appropriate time and must have a notary public present at his or her location to administer the oath.
- If you are directed to prepare a Report, the Report must be submitted within two (2) weeks of the date of the hearing. Prior to submitting the report to the Magistrate, the attorney who is designated to prepare the Report shall send the Report to opposing counsel prior to submitting it to the Magistrate. Counsel shall use their best efforts to resolve any disagreement as to the form and content of the Report. When the Report is submitted to the Magistrate, please include a letter indicating the date that the Report was submitted to opposing counsel, method of delivery and whether or not opposing counsel consents to the entry of the Report. Written objections to the form and content of the proposed Report shall be delivered to the Magistrate within five (5) days of the date of submission of the proposed Report. Counsel submitting a written objection may, but is not required to, submit his or her version of the Report. This is not the opportunity for either counsel to argue that the Magistrate's recommendation contains errors of law or fact. Instead, the only issue to be addressed is whether the recommended Order correctly reflects the Magistrate's oral findings and recommendations. If requested by the objecting attorney, it is hoped that the attorney who originally drafted the Report will provide the objecting attorney with the Report by email.
- You must email the proposed Report and proposed Order upon Report of Magistrate ratifying said report in word format and an indication that the email was copied to opposing counsel or pro se party by email or regular U.S. Mail. You must also submit two (2) sets of stamped, addressed envelopes for return of the Report and Order to all parties who do not have a registered email address. The envelopes will be mailed to obtain uniformity of date of service. The Report may also be served by facsimile. Please see Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.080(b) as to the time for serving exceptions.
- Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.490, Florida Probate Rule of Procedure 5.697 and Florida Family Law Rule of Procedure 12.490 provide that the parties have 10 days after the Report is served on them to file exceptions to a Report. Thus, even if the Report was signed and mailed the same day as the hearing, it can be fifteen (15) days before the Circuit Judge can enter an Order or Final Judgment approving the Report. If the parties desire to expedite the entry of an enforceable Order or Final Judgment, each party must make such announcement at the hearing or deliver to the Magistrate, an original and one (1) copy of a Notice waiving the time period to file exceptions under Rule 1.490(h), 5.697(f) or 12.490(f) and consenting to the Circuit Court taking immediate appropriate action on the Report.
- All Reports must indicate whether there was electronic reporting or a court reporter. If a court reporter was present, the Report must indicate the name and address of the court reporter.
- All Reports must indicate the date of the Order of Referral to General Magistrate.
- The title of all Reports includes the words, "General Magistrate's Report and Recommendations." Please title the Report properly; for example, "General Magistrate's Report and Recommendations on Wife's Motion for Temporary Support; Notice of Filing" or "Report and Recommendations of Magistrate on Final Hearing of Dissolution of Marriage; Notice of Filling."