This is the fifth segment of Tony Munter’s interview with Florida false claims attorney Gary Farmer. In the interview portion below, Mr. Farmer discusses some strange quirks about false claims cases in Florida. Click here for Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, or Part 4.
Gary: I wanted to tell you real quick too about the Florida Act that’s a little different. The Florida statute is a little funky in that it doesn’t come right out and say affirmatively that the initial complaint is filed under seal. It’s really weird. It refers in later part of the stature to the sealed complaint. It does not specifically say that it is to be filed under seal. If you look at 68.083 is the section. Then subsection (2) talks about unsealing it. That’s actually an issue because years ago there was an issue down at Miami where it was this secret docket of this certain type of criminal cases.I don’t even remember the detail, but it created a hullabaloo and then new rules of judicial administration were drafted to make sure we didn’t use the secret dockets. So the chief judge in Leon County, which is where we have to file State False Claims cases, decided that he was not going to keep under seal the dockets for these cases.