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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    24

    Default Motion for Sanctions

    My question involves court procedures for the state of: Florida
    I filed a supplemental petition to modify martial settlement agreement. Ex was served in July. Ex atty answered. However, did not supply mandatory disclosure docs. I filed a Motion to Compel. Judge granted Motion to Compel, giving 15 days. Mandatory disclosure docs have still not been provided and it's now been 27 days! Per Florida Family law of procedure, these docs should have been submitted. I cannot set for mediation until I have MDD, i.e. Financials. I would like to file Motion for Sanctions. However, I am pro se litigant what I have read appears to be for collection of atty fees. What other sanctions can be done?
    Thanks!!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    638

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    This is one that ticks me off. Our Bar Association writes our rules of civil procedure and our uniform trial court rules to be adopted by the legislature and they are rubber stamped. Guess who the rules favor?

    Apparently an attorney's time is worth money but mine isn't.

    In a similar situation, I once filed a motion for "sanctions as the court deems appropriate" and the judge fined the opposing attorney. The money of course went to the court. Even when not spelled out in the law, a judge has a lot of power in her courtroom.

    That's worth a shot for two reasons. First, you might get the attorney fined and second, the motion alone might get the attorney off his butt.

    If you have already filed a claim for a sum certain, and you have an idea what those financial records will show, you could ask for a default judgement for your initial claim. I doubt you'd get it, but again you'd rattle the attorney's cage and make him appear before the judge to answer for his delay.

    Judges don't like having their orders ignored, especially when it's already an order to compel, and if you're lucky this judge will take it personally and do "something" to that attorney if you file the motions.

    Be sure to clearly and specifically ask for hearings on the motions.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    73,006

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    How do you come up with the idea that it is the ex's lawyer's fault that the ex- won't comply with the order?

    The most obvious thing to do would be to petition for a show cause order, asking the court to compel the ex- to appear in court and 'show cause' why he should not be held in contempt.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    24

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    Thank you for all your answers. Maybe I need to be more clear. Ex filed for child support mod. In Jan.Dept of Revenue came back with a "downward modification warranted" after all mandatory disclosures were provided, through the dept of revenue, (which were not provided for viewing)which ex declined. I then filed for supplemental petition to modify MSA.
    And submitted all required docs, following rules and complying with rules 12.285. Ex and their counsel were served giving 20 days to answer. Answer came back on time, however did not include MDD. I then sent letters to opposing counsel requesting mandatory disclosure per rule 12.285 x 2 and cc'd clerk or court. Still no response. I then filed motion to compel, in which judge granted
    giving respondent 15 days to comply. I have still not received MDD it has now been 30+ days. I have now filed motion for contempt and motion for sanctions. I am pro se and have asked for $$$ to compensate me for lost production time for having to file these motions. I don't believe the ex's counsel is purposely with holding, my thoughts are he has a very difficult client, why else would an atty go through the chance of sanctions for a simple modification? My biggest beef is I am still paying child support at a very high rate, based on child care expense, in which neither of my children
    Attend childcare ,nor have they for over a year. However, child support I pay includes $886.00 monthly for childcare. So you can see why I want the MDD, so I can modify ASAP, without them I cannot move forward nor set for mediation and continue to over pay until it's done! Again thanks for your replies. I will update as things move forward! Respectfully, Tired of Waiting!

    On a side note, I have an email from OP dated Oct 27 11, stating he has now received MDD from his client and will forward me the same immediately. I attached this email as an exhibit with the Motion for Sanctions, to show non-compliance as docs have not been delivered.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    638

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    Quote Quoting Mr. Knowitall
    View Post
    How do you come up with the idea that it is the ex's lawyer's fault that the ex- won't comply with the order?
    She says the ex has an attorney. Here, the attorney would have to convince his client to provide him with the needed docs to comply with the order, or officially resign as the attorney in a notice to the court. If he continues to be the attorney of record, then he is responsible to respond.

    I would file a motion to make any reduction retroactive to the date you should have received the docs. Since it appears that the opposition blatantly disregarded the courts orders and the law, the judge just might give it to you. I'd make the claim that the opposition is deliberately delaying to forestall a lowering of payments.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    24

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    This case was presented in front of a General Magistrate, ex filed motion for contempt, for non payment. However, it was noted during the hearing that the bank acct was frozen by CSE and reserved the contempt and date of Supplemental Petition filing. To this date there has still been no answer as to how CSE captured that acct. This at best is a nightmare case, reason for non payment was CS being paid to one county, who kept returning monies to me, case was closed after 7yrs of collecting CS. Once ex filed for mod, case was closed for improper jurisdiction, ex opened new case in correct county, so it looked as no payments were being made. Hence, the contempt, which was not upheld.
    Good ole CSE and DOR...do they communicate?? My guess would be NO.
    Either way motions and sanctions have been filed. It appears as if the magistrates notes were approved, reserving date of filing which was 7/11. Which would be retro, I think?
    I'll tell you this, all whom I have spoke with and who knows this atty states he is very meek and mild and I just can't imagine he would not comply with MDD and Rule 12.285 for a measly CS mod case. But something's gotta give. He either needs to give it up or get off the pot!
    I appreciate all your replies! This has been quite a learning experience! Time for justice!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    24

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    Judge set hearing for Contempt and Sanction for non compliance with civil procedure. One day before hearing OP atty withdrew. Hearing set for tomorrow, now with no atty, what will take place??? Can atty still be held accountable for non compliance or are they off the hook? Not sure what to expect now!! Any help would be greatly appreciated! TY

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    CT & IL
    Posts
    5,276

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    Quote Quoting E2mich
    View Post
    Judge set hearing for Contempt and Sanction for non compliance with civil procedure. One day before hearing OP atty withdrew. Hearing set for tomorrow, now with no atty, what will take place??? Can atty still be held accountable for non compliance or are they off the hook? Not sure what to expect now!! Any help would be greatly appreciated! TY
    They may bring the documents with them. You filed pro se & now are lost ? You can still ask for $$ for the noncompliance, ask the court to disallow any court filings by the opposing party until they comply, etc. Since YOU filed, you must have plead something in respect to the opposing party's income .. you can ask the court to deny the opposing party the right to object to your filing's information..

    Sanctions for noncompliance of discovery are varied and the judge can basically do what he wants ... they already violated his order.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    638

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    Great answer. Follow it.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    24

    Default Re: Motion for Sanctions

    Great answer! Thats what I wondered, can OP counsel just drop case 1 day prior to hearing and be off the hook? Seemed they would have withdrew prior to this. Interestingly enough I receive a letter today from OP counsel. Stated Motion to withdraw as council due to irreconcilable difference! OP counsel called me, I assume since I'm pro se and stated he:is withdrawing from case, he and his party shared differences and he wished me the best of luck. WTH? I guess this is good for my case. Curious to see whats gonna happen tomorrow...either X in hand cuffs, held for contempt or judge may say..I give you 5 days or jail time...not sure..either way Mandatory disclosure is MANDATORY! Hence the reason for this filing, no mandatory disclosure aka discovery has been provided. Which violates Civil Rules of Procedure, as well as Fl Family law of procedure 12.285,

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