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eFiling with the Clerk's office



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Pinellas Clerk's Office is open to accept Criminal Court E-Filings

Criminal Attorneys:

The Pinellas Clerk's Office is accepting Criminal e-filings (subsequent pleadings) for existing cases through the Florida Courts E-Filing Portal. Attorney offices are now able to e-file their case documents and these pleadings will be processed by our Criminal Court Records department staff. The Criminal Divisions we will be accepting electronic pleadings for are the following:

  • Circuit Criminal
  • County Criminal
  • Criminal Traffic
  • Civil Traffic
  • Juvenile Delinquency
  • Electronic Filing-Florida Courts eFiling Portal Promo

    Supreme Court of Florida Order: AOSC14-1 ELECTRONIC FILING OF CRIMINAL, JUVENILE, AND TRAFFIC CASES VIA THE FLORIDA COURTS E-FILING PORTAL


    TO REGISTER AND/OR SUBMIT AN E-FILING VISIT THE STATEWIDE E-FILING PORTAL.

    To preview the statewide, Florida Courts E-Filing portal, please visit the E-Filing Authority Board website, which provides e-filing educational videos, instructions and FCCC’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

    For technical assistance with the Florida Courts E-Filing Portal, please email support@myflcourtaccess.com or call 850-577-4609.

    How to Choose Case Type and Sub Case Type for Your Case

    E-file Portal Rules FAQ's

    E-file Pinellas County Procedures FAQ's Civil Attorneys:
    In April 2013, the Pinellas County Clerk’s office began accepting Civil Court Record e-filings for County, Family (Domestic Relations), and Circuit Divisions.

    Administrative Order 2013-016-PI-CIR, regarding E-filings

    Probate Attorneys:
    In November 2011 the Pinellas Clerk’s Office received approval from the Florida Courts Technology Commission to accept Probate e-filings from attorneys. Attorneys are authorized to e-file Guardianship and Estate pleadings through the statewide e-filing portal.

    There is no need to follow up your e-filing with the paper documents except for: wills, bonds, original death certificates and Pre-need Guardianships. These particular documents will still be needed in original format, however to expedite the processing of your case, you may scan and submit the images of these documents initially with your e-filing.

    We are very excited about this big news as it provides the Clerk’s office with the opportunity to move forward towards the goal of a paperless office and provides the attorneys the ability to e-file without having to follow up with the originals.

    PROJECT HISTORY:
    The Pinellas County Clerk’s office, along with Clerk’s statewide, has supported the Florida eFiling Authority in the development of  the statewide eFiling portal. As of January 1, 2011, the portal became operational allowing for the eFiling of cases through a single point of entry.


    1. What is the ePortal?
    2. How do I register to file through the ePortal?
    3. Who is allowed to use eFiling (title companies, law firms, business, etc.)?
    4. What document types does the ePortal support?
    5. Can I file for all cases?
    6. How will users of the ePortal be authenticated?
    7. Does the ePortal support pro-se filers?
    8. Can a single filing apply to more than one case?
    9. Can I submit multiple pleadings for the same case in the same e-file transaction?
    10. Will there be any charges for users of the ePortal?
    11. How will the ePortal store the filing time and time stamping of filings?
    12. May I eFile an Appeal with Pinellas County?
    13. May I file a document using an electronic signature?
    14. What electronic notifications will be supported by the ePortal?


    1. What is the ePortal?

    The ePortal is a website that provides eFiling capability to users with a single statewide login. Users may utilize the ePortal web interface to submit documents to Clerks. The ePortal also supports automated interfaces with other submitter systems. The ePortal supports transmissions to/from the local case/recording systems using national XML standards. The ePortal also provides electronic notifications and service on behalf of filers.

    The Florida Legislature and eFiling Authority.

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    2. How do I register to file through the ePortal?

    For information on how to register please visit: www.myflcourtaccess.com

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    3. Who is allowed to use eFiling (title companies, law firms, business, etc.)?

    Florida Bar Attorneys and Self-Represented (Pro Se) litigants can use eFiling.

    4.What document types does the ePortal support?

    The ePortal will accept filings in Word or PDF formats. All documents will be converted to PDF formats by the ePortal. By default, the ePortal will provide the PDF format to the local record system. Each county will also have the option to receive the original Word document if available. The ePortal can also provide the conversion to TIFF upon request if the local Data Management System (DMS) cannot.

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    5. Can I file for all cases?

    Not at this time. Pinellas County currently accepts Probate division e-filings.
    In April 2013, the Pinellas County Clerk’s office, began accepting Civil Court Record e-filings for County, Family (Domestic Relations), and Circuit Divisions.

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    6. How will users of the ePortal be authenticated?

    Individual Florida Bar members will register to use this system and receive authentication credentials (login ID, password) upon validation of their online registration. Upon receipt of the completed Online Electronic Filing Registration, the system will verify that the attorney is admitted to practice and in good standing with The Florida Bar. A combination including but not limited to name, e-mail and Florida Bar Number, obtained during registration, will be validated against an electronic list provided by the Florida Bar. The attorney will be able to designate their user name and password. Email notification will be sent to the attorney at their identified e-mail account reflecting either approval or denial of the account. The selected user name and password will enable the attorney to retrieve and file documents electronically and to receive the Notice of Electronic Filing. The person to whom the user name and password is assigned is responsible for any documents filed using that user name and password. Each local Clerk's office may opt to participate in the authentication of the user accounts if they choose to do so.

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    7. Does the ePortal support Pro Se filers?

    Yes, the ePortal now supports Self-Represented (Pro Se) filers. Please visit our Pro Se page for more information.

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    8.. Can a single filing apply to more than one case?

    No.

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    9. Can I submit multiple pleadings for the same case in the same e-file transaction?

    Yes, multiple pleadings can be filed simultaneously, if they are attached as individual documents according to Administrative Order 13-16.

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    10. Will there be any charges for users of the ePortal?

    Authorized filers may access the ePortal and file documents at no charge above the statutory filing fee. If a filer chooses to pay statutory fees using a credit card, they will be charged an additional credit card transaction fee which will be used to cover the associated banking and merchant fees as allowed by Florida Statutes.

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    11. How will the ePortal store the filing time and time stamping of filings?

    All dates and times, including when the filing is received at the ePortal and accepted/pended by the clerk, are stored in the ePortal database to ensure the accuracy and consistency of when the event took place. An electronic filing may be submitted to the portal at any time of the day or night, twenty four (24) hours a day, seven days a week. For purposes of determining timeliness, an accepted filing shall be deemed filed on the date and time when the electronic filing is received at the ePortal. However, all documents filed after currently established filing hours will not be processed until the next business day.

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    12. May I eFile an Appeal with Pinellas County?

    Yes. Notices of Appeal and subsequent filings to appeal cases can now be accepted at the Portal. The filing fees associated will populate on the case information page upon selection of this case type. However, 2nd District Court of Appeal filing fees are payable and should be remitted to the 2nd DCA.

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    13. May I file a document using an electronic signature?

    Yes, the ePortal authority has received permission allowing filers to use electronic signatures. Below are the acceptable signature types.

    Signatures of Registered Users
    A submission by a registered user is not required to bear the electronic image of the handwritten signature or an encrypted signature of the filer. Instead, the requirement of a signature on an electronically filed document may be met as follows (as required by Administrative Order 13-16):

    s/ John Doe
    John Doe (e-mail address)
    Bar Number 12345
    Attorney for (Plaintiff/Defendant) XYZ Company
    ABC Law Firm
    123 Main Street
    Clearwater, FL 33756
    (727) 123-4567

    Multiple Attorneys of Record Signatures
    When a filing requires the signatures of two or more attorneys of record:

    • The filing attorney shall initially confirm that the content of the document is acceptable to all attorneys required to sign the document and shall obtain the signatures of all attorneys on the document. For this purpose, physical, facsimile or electronic signatures are permitted.
    • The filing attorney then shall file the document electronically, indicating the signatories, (e.g., "s/ Jane Doe," "s/ John Smith," etc.) for each attorney's signature.

    Original Documents or Handwritten Signatures
    Original documents, such as death certificates, or those that contain original signatures such as deeds, mortgages and wills must be filed manually until further standards have been adopted.

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    14. What electronic notifications will be provided by the ePortal?

    The ePortal will provide the following electronic notifications:

    • Receipt of subscriber application
    • Acceptance/activation of subscriber account
    • Change of subscriber profile including login credentials
    • Receipt of filing including filing ID number
    • Acceptance of filing including filing ID number and case identification data
    • Pending of filing including filing ID number, case identification data and pending reason
    • Acceptance notice with attached copy of electronically issued/processed summonses, writs, defaults and other processes by which the Clerk is able to electronically sign documents

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    1. Do I need to provide a paper document follow-up to the Clerk's office after submitted my filing through the ePortal?
    2. Will the Clerk accept paper documents rather than e-Filed through the ePortal?
    3. What will happen if I do send paper documents?
    4. What documents will the Clerk's Office not accept through the e-Filing Portal?
    5. Can a single filing apply to more than one case number?
    6. What is 'Filed for Judicial Review' notice?
    7. Must attachments to documents be uploaded separately in Pinellas County?
    8. How do I know if I have to pay the re-open fee to file my document? How do I pay the re-open fee if one is owed?
    9. How do I e-File Defaults, Writs of Possession, Writs of Garnishment/Execution and/or Replevin needing a Clerk's signature?
    10. How do I file a Surety or cash bond through the e-Filing portal?
    11. How do I file a Notice of Action for Service by Publication through the e-Filing Portal?
    12. How will attorneys submit proposed orders to the court?
    13. How will the summonses be issued? How do I receive my summonses for service?
    14. How do the extra fees owed, other than the case filing fee, get calculated and assessed on the ePortal? i.e., recording documents, counterclaims, reopen fees etc.
    15. How do I count parties that need to be indexed for recording documents and number of defendants to assess the appropriate fees?
    16. What do I need to include when filing a new case so my filing does not get pended back?


    1. Do I need to provide a paper document follow-up to the Clerk's office after submitted my filing through the ePortal?

    Only if an original is required by Pinellas County Administrative Order 13-16 or 13-28. Submitting paper documents after they have been e-Filed will result in documents being processed and on the docket twice resulting in a delay for other processes you may require from the Clerk.

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    2. Will the Clerk accept paper documents rather than e-Filed through the ePortal?

    No, the Pinellas County Clerk's Office will no longer accept documents mandated to be e-Filed by any means other than through the ePortal, unless authorized or mandated by Pinellas County Administrative Order 13-16 or Florida Rules of Judicial Administration 2.525. See question What documents will the Clerk's Office not accept through the e-Filing Portal for exceptions.

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    3. What will happen if I do send paper documents?

    The Clerk will not process any documents not filed through the ePortal that should have been filed through the ePortal. A notice will be sent to the filer that their documents were not filed or processed and to e-File the documents.

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    4. What documents will the Clerk's Office not accept through the e-Filing Portal?

    Proposed orders, judgments, letters or correspondence directed to a judge may not be electronically filed through the ePortal but must be submitted directly to the assigned judge's office along with sufficient copies for conforming and stamped, addressed envelopes for mailing.pursuant to Adminstrative Order 13-16.

    1. Do e-File the underlying motion and other paperwork needing to be filed.
    2. Do not provide the above orders to the judge's office until you receive notice from the ePortal that the motions or paperwork related to the order(s) are completed and filed and on the docket or the paperwork will be returned to you and cause a delay in the processing of your case.

    Requests for issuance of process for service by publication (Notice(s) of Action): Please submit the required copies and stamped addressed envelopes for mailing directly to Civil Court Records 315 Court St Room 170 Clearwater Fl 33756.

    Posting of surety/cash bonds

    Posting of deposits into the courts registry

    Any recordable document in which you want the original to be mailed back i.e. satisfactions of judgments, assignment of judgments, judgment liens etc. - stamped addressed envelopes are required to be submitted with the paperwork to be mailed back.

    Requests for a certificate of mailing in Delinquent Tenant/Eviction cases.

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    5. Can a single filing apply to more than one case number?

    Under most circumstances No. Filings must be submitted on a 'per case basis'

    If more than one case number is necessary on a document because the cases are tied closely together, you will need to attach and submit the document for as many case numbers as are on the document, circling the case number on each of the separate documents uploaded to which it is to be docketed.

    If a case is consolidated into another case number place the main case number with the style of the case first, for all other case numbers listed place the remarks 'consolidated with (specify the main case number)' so the Clerk knows which case number listed is the main case number for the document to be docketed on.

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    6. What is 'Filed for Judicial Review' notice?

    This is the action taken to remove 'inactive' filings from the portal system. The portal has established a 5 day timeframe for 'pended' filings to be resubmitted for processing. The filing, if not resubmitted (this also includes when a new filing is submitted instead of the original filing being resubmitted) within the 5 day time frame, will be sent to the Judicial Review status. At this point, the filing cannot be retrieved. If the documents need to be filed with the Clerk, a new filing will have to be submitted. An email notification will be sent to the filer notifying them of the status change.

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    7. Must attachments to documents be uploaded separately in Pinellas County?

    Yes, Pinellas County Administrative Order 13-16 requires attachments to be labeled and filed as separate documents in the filing.

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    8..

    How do I know if I have to pay the re-open fee to file my document? How do I pay the re-open fee if one is owed?

    F.S. 28.241 (circuit civil filings) and F.S. 34.041 (county civil filings) require the payment of a reopen fee when filing certain documents.

    If a re-open fee is owed, the fee is assessed by placing a '1' in the Reopen fee box under the Additional Fee Options on the case information page. Your filing will be pended back if the fee is due and not paid when submitting your filing at the ePortal.

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    9. How do I e-File Defaults, Writs of Possession, Writs of Garnishment/Execution and/or Replevin needing a Clerk's signature?

    All documents are mandatory to E-file unless otherwise specified in Pinellas County A/O 13-16. The Clerk will sign and issue the required documents and send them to you electronically at the email address provided on the documents in your filing. If no email address is provided on your documents, they will be emailed to the email address you registered with at the portal.

    Defaults - A default form for the clerk to sign must be attached or be a part of the motion filed. The clerk will not generate a default for signature. Please note that your motion and default must be separated from one another, however can be filed in the same E-Filing submission (per Administrative Order 13-16).

    Writs of Garnishment/Writ of Replevin - Place a '1' in the appropriate writ box under the Additional Fee Options on the case information page to assess the appropriate fees. Submit your proposed writ form by selecting the Document Group 'Writs'.

    Writs of Possession - Submit your proposed writ form by selecting the Document Group 'Writs'. The issued writ will be returned to you via e-mail. Please include an e-mail address on the document for the Clerk to use in order to return the issued writ. If no email address is provided on your documents, the Writ will be emailed to the email address you registered with at the portal. The filer will be responsible for providing the issued writ along with the appropriate funds to the Sheriff for service.

    **Please note that the Clerk cannot issue a writ of possession prior to a Final Judgment having been entered-it is suggested that you wait until the judgment is entered and reflects on the docket in your case before EFiling your writ of possession to the Clerk. Submission of this document prior to a judgment being entered will delay your writ from being issued.

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    10. How do I file a Surety or cash bond through the e-Filing portal?

    Surety and Cash bonds cannot be filed through the e-Filing portal. Original surety or cash bonds must be filed in paper form directly to the Clerk's Office.

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    11. How do I file a Notice of Action for Service by Publication through the e-Filing Portal?

    Requests for issuance of service of process by publication will not be accepted through the e-Filing Portal. The Notice of Action must be submitted to the Clerk in paper form. The completed Notice of Action must include the response due date as defined by F.S. 49.09.

    If mailing is required under F.S. 49.12, the following must also be provided the clerk:

    1. A pre-addressed, pre-paid envelope for the residence of any party to be served by publication.
    2. Sufficient copies for the mailing.
    3. A self addressed, pre-stamped envelope for return of the issued Notice of Action to the filer.
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    12. How will attorneys submit proposed orders to the court?

    All proposed orders, judgments, letters or correspondence directed to a judge may not be electronically filed through the ePortal but must be submitted directly to the assigned judge's office along with sufficient copies for conforming and stamped, addressed envelopes for mailing pursuant to Administrative Order 13-16.

    1. Do e-File the underlying motion and other paperwork needing to be filed.
    2. Do not provide the above orders to the judge's office until you receive notice from the ePortal that the motions or paperwork related to the order(s) are completed and filed and on the docket or the paperwork will be returned to you and cause a delay in the processing of your case.

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    13. How will the summonses be issued? How do I receive my summonses for service?

    All summonses must be e-Filed except if filing a Delinquent Tenant/Eviction case. (**See information below specific to Delinquent Tenant/Eviction summonses). The Clerk's Office is still accepting summonses to be issued over the counter. However, it is strongly encouraged they be EFiled. If you have previously EFiled the summons to be issued at the portal, please do not bring in originals to be issued over the counter as the Clerk's Office will not sign your summonses. This is to prevent multiple copies of the same summonses from being issued.

    The filer must prepare summonses he/she wishes to be issued by the Clerk and attach them as a document to the filing, except in Small Claims cases (* see below). The statutory $10.00 fee per summons for issuance is assessed by placing the appropriate number in the Summons to be Issued box under the Additional Fee Options on the case information page of the ePortal. Summonses submitted without the appropriate fees will be pended back to the filer. The electronically issued summons will be emailed back to the filer. The filer is then responsible for effectuating service on the party.

    * When filing a Small Claims case DO NOT attach a summons. The Clerk prepares the Summons/Notice to Appear for Small Claims cases. Be sure to enter the number of summonses under the Additional Fee Options in order to calculate the $10.00 issuance fee, otherwise the Summons(es)/Notice to Appear will not be prepared.

    **If you are filing a Delinquent Tenant/Eviction case, you may E-file your summons(es) or you may submit them directly to the Clerk's Office. Copies and envelopes with sufficient postage for each mailing need to be provided to the Clerk in order for a certificate of mailing to be issued. This cannot be done through the EPortal.

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    14.

    How do the extra fees owed, other than the case filing fee, get calculated and assessed on the ePortal? i.e recording documents, counterclaims, reopen fees etc.

    All fees are calculated by placing the associated number in the boxes for the category of your filing under the Additional fee Options on the case information page of the ePortal. For example - Writs of Garnishment fees, recording fees, summonses to be issued, charges for extra defendants over 5, reopen fees, counterclaim fees etc.

    If recording a Lis Pendens or a Discharge of a Lis Pendens, please complete the boxes for Lis Pendens (# of parties) and Lis Pendens (# of pages) as the fees to record a Lis Pendens are different from other recordable documents.

    For all other documents needing to be recorded complete both the lines for # of pages but also include names considered for indexing to calculate the statutory fees. Please see next question on how to count parties for indexing.

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    15. How do I count parties that need to be indexed for recording documents and number of defendants to assess the appropriate fees?

    1. To calculate parties that need to be indexed for recording a document:
      Count all plaintiff(s) and defendant(s), alternate names (AKA's, DBA's Assignees of etc) are counted as separate parties. Do not count unknown parties (unknown tenants, unknown spouse, any and all unknown parties etc.).
    2. To calculate additional defendants over 5:
      Count only defendants, all unknown parties are counted separately (unknown tenants, unknown spouse, any and all unknown parties, etc). Do not count alternate names (AKA's, DBA's, etc.)

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    16. What do I need to include when filing a new case so my filing does not get pended back?

    1. Case type selection should match Civil Cover Sheet.
    2. Do not add attorney, or they will be added as a party to the Civil Cover Sheet. The attorney is added automatically from the filing ID entered at the portal for the filing.
    3. All main parties should be added to a new case, entering them in the order they are styled in the complaint, starting with the plaintiff(s). Do not add alternate names (AKA's, DBA's. Assignees etc.) they will be added by the Clerk.
    4. Add Unknown parties as an Organization.
    5. Filings will be pended if the money amount due/owing is incorrect. Fill in the # of Defendants under the Additional Fee Options. The system will automatically calculate, based on the number entered, if additional fees are due.
    6. Separate attachments/exhibits from the complaint or other document and file as separate documents pursuant to A/O 13-16.

    Ken Burke, Clerk of the Circuit Court
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