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Detailed Guide: Florida

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Allows Cameras? Yes
Exceptions: None

Audio or Video Webcast? Yes
Media Guide Available? Yes
Allows Cell Phones to Record Video? Yes (with permission)

Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.450 permits electronic media and still photography coverage of proceedings in both the appellate and trial courts. Under this rule, coverage is subject only to the authority of the presiding judge, who may prohibit coverage to control court proceedings, prevent distractions, maintain decorum, and assure fairness of the trial. Exclusion of the media is permissible only where it is shown that the proceedings will be adversely affected because of a “qualitative difference” between electronic and other forms of coverage. Florida v. Palm Beach Newspapers, 395 So. 2d 544, 548 (1981).

At least one television camera operated by one photographer and no more than two still cameras operated by one still photographer are allowed in trial and appellate courtrooms at one time. The media are responsible for arranging pooling agreements. The coverage equipment may not be distracting and members of the media have an affirmative duty to demonstrate to the judge, prior to proceedings, that the equipment is in compliance with the rule. Members of the media may not use artificial lighting; however, the court may modify or add to the courtroom’s light sources as long as the changes do not involve a public expense. The court decides the placement of the cameras and members of the media may not move about the courtroom while proceedings are underway. The media are prohibited from covering conferences amongst parties, like conferences between attorneys and their clients or attorneys and the judge.

Florida Rule of Judicial Administration Rule 2.451 requires the removal of all electronic devices from jurors before the beginning of jury deliberations. The use of electronic devices by all others in a courtroom is subject to the authority of the presiding judge.

Links: Authority
Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.450, pg. 111-113: Technological Coverage of Judicial Proceedings
Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.451, pg. 114-115: Use of Electronic Devices

Links: Other
Florida Bar: Cameras in Florida’s Courts
Video Webcast: Florida Supreme Court

Last edited: December 12, 2022