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Instructions and Procedures (Chambers)

Courtroom and Hearings
Using Courtroom Technology
Objections to Claims
Emergency Hearing Requests
Exhibit Labels in CM/ECF
Ex Parte Communications and Correspondence Addressed to Chambers

Proposed Orders
Stay Relief


The title of all Motions for Continuance must include:
  • What you are requesting to be continued (e.g., Motion to Incur).
  • The docket entry number of the motion/application being continued (NOT THE DOCKET NUMBER OF THE NOTICE OF HEARING).
The title of all Orders granting continuance must include:
  • The title of the specific motion/application being continued (e.g., Mtn. to Incur).
  • The docket entry number of the motion/application being continued.  (NOT THE DOCKET NUMBERS FOR THE MOTION FOR CONTINUANCE OR THE HEARING NOTICE.)

Telephone appearances must be arranged by calling CourtCall, an independent conference call company, at (866) 582-6878 not later than 3:00 p.m. one day prior to the hearing date. Please read the information found in the document entitled Telephonic Appearance Procedures for Bankruptcy Judge Karen K. Specie before utilizing CourtCall.

Courtroom and Hearings
  • Only one person talking at a time.
  • Address only the Court – not each other.
  • Court call – state name clearly; spell last name.
  • Telephonic – it is up to you to initiate the call and to be sure all attorneys wishing to appear can be conferenced in – BE ON TIME!  Telephonic hearings are still hearings.
  • Speak from the podium – especially in Tallahassee.
Using Courtroom Technology
  • To use the courtroom technology, such as the evidence or exhibit presentation system, contact the Clerk's Office at least two business days before the hearing in order to test your presentation and equipment in the courtroom with the IT Department.
  • Be sure to bring the actual equipment for testing that will be used during the hearing.
Objections to ClaimsEmergency Hearing RequestsExhibit Labels in CM/ECF
  • Include the full name and address of the Claimant as per the filed Claim.
  • Include the Claim number and amount.
  • Show proper service.
  • If submitting Orders sustaining claims objections after no response to negative notice, do not include rulings on legal issues – statute of limitations, not proper holder, etc.
  • If the Debtor listed a claim (not as disputed), the Court will not sustain objections to claims filed by the claimant listed on the basis of failure to attach documentation to the claim if the amounts are close.  Such objections to claims will receive the Court’s scrutiny and in extreme circumstances could lead to sanctions (See, e.g. In re MacFarland, 462 B.R. 857 (Bankr. S.D. Fla. 2011).
  • Orders must contain the Claim number and the name and address of Claimant.
  • Objections must clearly indicate the amount of the claim to be disallowed:
    • DO: “…claim No. 1 filed by ___________ in the amount of $4,321, is disallowed.”
    • DON’T: “…claim is disallowed in its entirety.”
  • Use this option ONLY in event of an emergency. Emergency motions MUST be accompanied by a Statement of Need for Emergency Hearing (L.R. 9073-1(B)(3)) – do not say "the reason this is an emergency is as stated in our motion." Local Form #7 , Statement of Need for Emergency Hearing has been provided to assist you with this requirement.
  • When uploading PDF files in addition to the main document, filers may use the “Category” options presented by CM/ECF but absolutely must use the “Description” field to fully describe the nature of each PDF exhibit.

    Ex Parte Communications and Correspondence Addressed to Chambers

    Judge Specie shall not engage in ex parte communication of any kind. Bankruptcy Rule 9003 states: "any party in interest, and any attorney, accountant, or employee of a party in interest shall refrain from ex parte meetings and communications with the court concerning matters affecting a particular case or proceeding." Failure to comply with this rule may result in sanctions.

    Do not write letters to, e-mail, or call Judge Specie or her Law Clerks on any pending case or proceeding. Except in extremely unusual circumstances, each letter or e-mail addressed to Judge Specie or her Law Clerks, or sent to the court and identifying a particular case or proceeding, will be placed on the relevant docket and made part of the public record. Any such letter or e-mail may be set for hearing.

    Proposed Orders

    Click here for instructions on preparing and submitting proposed orders. All proposed orders must be submitted electronically through CM/ECF.

    Stay Relief
    • Beginning in January, 2013, all parties MUST abide by deadlines in hearing notices and CourtCall requirements for telephonic appearances.
    • Hearings will proceed as scheduled unless the court has received a TIMELY proposed order.
    • Requests for cancellation should be made via CM/ECF.
    • Beginning in January, 2013, deadline to submit settlements or proposed orders is being changed:  3:00 P.M. EASTERN STANDARD TIME THE DAY PRIOR TO THE SCHEDULED HEARING.
      • DO:                 “The Movant made sufficient allegations and a request in the
                                 Motion to waive the 14-day stay requirement of Bankruptcy Rule
                                 4001(a)(3). No objection being raised, the automatic stay shall
                                 be lifted immediately upon execution of this order.”
      • DON’T:            “The 14 day stay requirement under Rule 4001(a)(3) is waived.”

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