florida law

A federal appeals court has refused to block a Florida law that sets requirements for minor political parties that want to place presidential candidates on the general election ballot.

The Independent Party of Florida and the Party for Socialism and Liberation contend the law violates First Amendment and equal-protection rights, but a three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday rejected their attempt to obtain a preliminary injunction. In doing so, the appeals court upheld a June decision by U.S. District Judge Mark Walker.

COURTESY OF CESAR ALVAREZ

Arturo Alvarez, trailblazing Miami trial lawyer and co-founder of the Cuban American Bar Association, died Monday at the age of 71.

A native of Havana, Cuba, Alvarez was one of a handful of Cuban law students at the University of Florida when he graduated in 1972. He entered his field at a time when South Florida firms were in dire need of bilingual attorneys, but they still lacked a community to rely on.

Scott Luxor / Sun Sentinel

Florida’s avenue for giving the power to the people is now a multimillion dollar business, one that is being exploited by special interests and flooded with mystery cash from secret donors.

As a result, everyday Floridians are being blocked from the system that was supposed to give them a way to bypass big money interests.

Measures to protect police dogs and horses and crack down on hazing and child-like sex dolls are among new laws ready to take effect next week.

Joe Cavaretta / South Florida Sun Sentinel

A state panel has voted unanimously to revoke the law enforcement accreditation of the Broward Sheriff’s Office, the largest sheriff’s office in Florida.

The loss of accreditation — a voluntary certification sought by law enforcement agencies — won’t affect BSO’s operations in a major way. But it is a further blow to the agency’s prestige at a time when a new command staff, including a new sheriff, are dealing with a string of failures and questionable conduct by deputies.

Florida’s record $90.98 billion spending plan for next fiscal year and more than 100 new laws will hit the books Monday.

Pixabay

Florida was the first state to enact a "stand your ground" law. Under the law, a person is allowed to use lethal force — and has no duty to retreat — if they believe they are in danger.

Since it was enacted in 2005, the law has drawn high-profile controversies, including the shooting of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin.

Harvard professor Caroline Light was recently in Miami to talk about the law’s historical roots and her book “Stand Your Ground: A History of America's Love Affair with Lethal Self-Defense.”

Six bills from the 2017 legislative session became effective with the arrival of the New Year.

Across the country, people have an estimated $10 billion  riding on the outcome of the men’s NCAA basketball championship.

Only a tiny part of that is being done legally, roughly 3 percent, according to the American Gaming Association. And while some states’ gambling laws are a bit gray, Florida’s gambling laws don’t leave a lot of questions on the matter.

Citizen's Arrests: What to Consider Before Rushing In

Feb 2, 2016
Creative Commons via Flickr / Scott Davidson (https://flic.kr/p/5H64X2)

 

Claudia Castillo, a civilian, recently made national headlines when she pulled over a speeding Miami-Dade police officer on the Dolphin Expressway. (See video below.)

Though she let the cop off with a warning, this brings up the subject of citizen’s arrests: how and when you should or can do it, and when you shouldn’t.

In Florida, you can place someone under citizen’s arrest if the person commits a felony or for misdemeanors that fall under “breach of peace.”

Derrick Lau/flickr

State and federal investigators are looking into infant deaths at St. Mary's Medical Center in West Palm Beach. The babies died following heart surgery.

City Red-Light Camera Programs Bypass State Laws

Jun 13, 2014
Miami Herald

  Since 2008, many South Florida residents have experienced the horror of finding surprise red-light ticket violations in their mailboxes. These violations are the result of red-light cameras, which were originally installed by cities as a so-called “safety precaution.” Fines for these tickets can come to as much as $200.

But, if any of these fines were obtained from 2008 to July 2010, many South Floridians may be getting a refund.