Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Office of the Chief Judge

Each of Florida's 20 judicial circuits is administered by a Chief Judge who is elected by a majority of the judges in the circuit for a term of two years. Chief Judge Nushin G. Sayfie was elected as the chief judicial officer of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit of Florida in 2021. She acts as liaison with the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in all judicial administrative matters and is responsible for the efficient and proper administration of the circuit and county courts. As set forth in Rule 2.050, Rules of Judicial Administration, this includes developing a plan for the prompt disposition of cases; assignment of judges, other court officers and executive assistants; control of dockets; regulation and use of courtrooms; mandatory periodic review of the status of the inmates of the county jail; and, consideration of statistical data. The Chief Judge also enters administrative orders to properly direct the court's day-to-day affairs and appoints committees to serve in an advisory capacity.

Administrative Judges

The Chief Judge is assisted in judicial administration by administrative judges assigned to the nine divisions of the circuit and county courts. Within their respective divisions, they have authority over assignment or transfer of cases, assignment of judges, the physical location of judges within a courthouse, back-ups for judges, and intra-division court policy. Eight associate administrative judges assist the administrative judges in their responsibilities and assume their authority in the event the administrative judges are unavailable.

Senior Judges

After retirement, judges may seek approval from the Supreme Court of Florida to serve as senior judges on temporary assignment to hear, conduct and try cases for the court. Senior judges of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit assist the judiciary by serving in judicial sections which are temporarily vacant and presiding over a variety of cases heard in the circuit and county courts.

General Magistrates

General magistrates are widely utilized in Florida's trial courts to assist the judiciary in the effective and timely disposition of cases. They are appointed by the chief judge to hear cases and make findings of fact and recommendations in a General Magistrate's Report to judges in the Family, Circuit Civil, Juvenile and Probate Divisions. Once the general magistrate has filed a report with the sitting judge, either party in the case may appeal by making exceptions to the general magistrate's findings and recommendations. If there are no exceptions to the report, the judge generally enters an order approving the decision of the general magistrate.

General Magistrates Information

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