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RESEARCH TIPS FOR JUDICIAL EXTERNS & LAW CLERKS. Presented By: Katie Miller. Available FSU Judicial Externships. FLORIDA COURTS WEBSITE . A good place to find some info. on the courts. FLSC WEBSITE. A good place to find some info. on the courts. DISTRICT COURTS .

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florida courts website

FLORIDA COURTS WEBSITE

A good place to find some info. on the courts

flsc website

FLSC WEBSITE

A good place to find some info. on the courts

district courts

DISTRICT COURTS

A good place to find some info. on the courts

circuit county courts

CIRCUIT & COUNTY COURTS

A good place to find some info. on the courts

federal courts

FEDERAL COURTS

www.uscourts.gov

supreme court jurisdiction

Capital cases

  • Bond Validations
  • Public Utilities Cases
  • DCA opinions declaring statutes or constitution invalid
  • Remaining cases are discretionary jurisdiction & original jurisdiction writs

SUPREME COURT JURISDICTION

What types of cases will you see in your court?

district court jurisdiction

All appeals not directly appealable to FLSC

  • Final actions of state agencies
  • 2nd tier certiorari review
  • Writs & discretionary review

DISTRICT COURT JURISDICTION

What types of cases will you see in your court?

jurisdiction

Circuit Courts

  • Felonies
  • Family Law
  • Civil Cases over $15,000
  • Probate/Guard./Mental Health
  • Juv. Dependency & Delinquency
  • Appeals from County Court
  • Writs such as cert., prohibition, mandamus, quo warranto, habeas corpus.

JURISDICTION

What types of cases will you see in your court?

jurisdiction13

County Courts

• Misdemeanors

• Small Claims (up to $5,000)

• Civil (up to and including $15,000)

• Traffic

JURISDICTION

What types of cases will you see in your court?

federal jurisdiction

Federal Court are courts of limited jurisdiction

  • Federal questions
  • Diversity jurisdiction & dispute more than $75,000

FEDERAL JURISDICTION

What types of cases will you see in your court?

statistics on types of filings

STATISTICS ON TYPES OF FILINGS

Data from Florida State Court website

lingo abbreviations

JA

  • CJ
  • PCA
  • OA
  • HFO, PRR, VCC
  • Law Clerk (elbow clerk) vs. Clerk of the Court
  • Baker Act, Jimmy Ryce cases
  • Workers’ Compensation & medical terms

LINGO & ABBREVIATIONS

If you don’t know what someone is talking about, don’t be afraid to ask questions.

rules of court

Helpful for jurisdictional questions and rule-based filings (i.e. postconviction motions rule 3.800, 3.850, 3.853)

  • Includes annotations online
  • Florida Evidence Code, Rules of Criminal Procedure, Civil Procedure, Probate, Traffic Court, Small Claims, Juvenile Procedure, Appellate, Mediator, Arbitrator, Family Law, Code of Judicial Conduct

RULES OF COURT

Commonly used resources

legal encyclopedias

Fla. Jur., American Juris., Corpus Juris Secundum

  • Good starting point for background information on your issue
  • Provides relevant case law

LEGAL ENCYCLOPEDIAS

Commonly used resources

treatises practice manuals other secondary sources

Ehrhardt’s Evidence

  • Florida Appellate Practice
  • Florida Criminal Procedure/ Civil Practice
  • Florida Construction Law Manual
  • Florida DUI handbook
  • Florida Sentencing
  • Moore’s Federal Practice
  • Law Review articles
  • Bar Journals

TREATISES, PRACTICE MANUALS, & OTHER SECONDARY SOURCES

Look to see what books are in your supervisor’s office or ask about commonly used resources.

fl jury instructions

Criminal and Civil

  • Available in hardcopy binders
  • Also available on FLSC website
  • Includes lesser included crimes, statute number and comments about amendments or when it was adopted.

FL JURY INSTRUCTIONS

Commonly used resources

u s code fl statutes fed regulations fl admin code

You may have to do research to determine which year to use.

  • Annotations
  • Legislative history
  • F.A.C. – sometimes easier to use paper copy

U.S. CODE, FL STATUTES, FED. REGULATIONS & FL ADMIN. CODE

Commonly used resources

people

Supervisor

  • Other clerks
  • Librarian
  • Other interns
  • But remember rules of confidentiality and don’t share information with colleagues outside the court

PEOPLE

Commonly used resources

confidentiality

Code of Judicial Conduct

  • No outside practice of law
  • No discussion of opinions, internal discussions, memos, summaries, with anyone outside of the Court.

CONFIDENTIALITY

don t complicate things

Stay on issue. Use the motions, briefs, court orders to define the issues.

  • Use the cases cited by the parties as a starting point.
  • Don’t make arguments for the parties.
  • Ask for help instead of spinning your wheels.

DON’T COMPLICATE THINGS

Efficient and effective research

final touches

Shephardize

  • Check citation formatting
  • – Blue Book & Florida Style Manual
  • Re-read and edit.

FINAL TOUCHES

Shephardize and citations

keeping up with the law

Slip opinions

  • Florida Law Weekly

KEEPING UP WITH THE LAW

Keeping up with the law and legal issues

keeping up with the law29

KEEPING UP WITH THE LAW

Keeping up with the law and legal issues

keeping up with the law30

KEEPING UP WITH THE LAW

American Bar Association website, Journal, blogs, podcasts

keeping up with the law31

iPhone Apps

  • ABA Journal
  • Fastcase
  • LawBox
  • Legal Edge
  • Legal Terms
  • RSS Reader
  • LawStack

KEEPING UP WITH THE LAW

Keeping up with the law and legal issues

professional associations

ABA Judicial Division – Council of Appellate Staff Attorneys

  • Recommended reading list for judicial clerkships produced by NALP (National Association of Legal Professionals)

PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS

Additional resources

good luck

CONCLUSION

  • Prepare before your first day
  • Know which resources to use
  • Remember to ask for help
  • Keep up with legal issues

GOOD LUCK!

Any questions?