Electronic Court Reporting (ECR)
It is the mission of the Electronic Court Reporting Office to provide the highest level of professional service with integrity, equality, and respect that ensures the public's right to due process by capturing a true and accurate record of court proceedings as mandated by State Statute or Administrative Rule.
The Twentieth Judicial Circuit is comprised of five counties: Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Glades and Hendry. The five counties currently deploy a hybrid model to provide court reporting services: A combination of digital court reporter (DCRs) and private contractors. The ECR system (CourtSmart) captures the record for those court events required to be recorded at public expense.
Each of the coastal counties of Lee, Collier, and Charlotte has a networked ECR system that is monitored by DCRs from a control room in that county. Glades and Hendry are remotely monitored by DCRs in the Lee County office.
In each of the five counties, private court reporting firms that are under contract must cover grand jury proceedings and death penalty cases, and might sometimes cover capital cases or felony trials as well. For these cases, the contract court reporter captures the record and provides any ancillary transcripts. For transcripts of events recorded by the DCRs utilizing the CourtSmart system, a private transcription contractor is used.
Electronic Court Reporting is required by State Statute or Court Administrative Rule to cover certain due-process proceedings. These proceedings include:
- Felony cases;
- Criminal traffic cases;
- Baker Acts, Marchman Acts, and Guardianships;
- Juvenile delinquency, detention, and dependency hearings and trials;
- Family law matters held before a General Magistrate;
- Civil cases held before a General Magistrate;
- Child support enforcement hearings, including Department of Revenue (DOR) and Support and Visitation Enforcement (SAVE); and
- Petitions for injunction against domestic violence (temporary restraining orders).
The full list of proceedings can be viewed in Administrative Order 2.2.
Electronic Court Reporting does not cover the following types of cases:
- Family law cases before a circuit judge;
- Civil traffic cases;
- Civil cases before a circuit judge, including foreclosure;
- If necessary, felony trials are reported by contracted court stenographers;
- Municipal ordinances and county ordinances.
Electronic Court Reporting does not prepare transcripts. A digital recording of the types of proceedings outlined in Administrative Order 2.2 can be provided to requestors upon submission of the proper form and fees.
When it is necessary to have a transcript it is the party's responsibility to have the recorded proceeding transcribed by an approved court reporter or approved transcriptionist according to the Rules of Judicial Administration.
Certain types of cases require a court order before a recorded proceeding may be released. Please click the link for Rules of Juvenile Procedure below for more information.
Rules of Juvenile Procedure Pertaining to Transcription of the Record:
PERTAINING TO DELINQUENCY PROCEEDINGS
RULE 8.100. GENERAL PROVISIONS FOR HEARINGS – (EXCERPT)
(f) Record of Testimony. A record of the testimony in all hearings shall be made by an official court reporter, a court approved stenographer, or a recording device. The records shall be preserved for 5 years from the date of the hearing. Official records of testimony shall be provided only on request of a party or a party's attorney or on a court order.
PERTAINING TO DEPENDENCY PROCEEDINGS
RULE 8.255. GENERAL PROVISIONS FOR HEARINGS – (EXCERPT)
(g) Record. A record of the testimony in all hearings shall be made by an official court reporter, a court-approved stenographer, or a recording device. The records of testimony shall be preserved as required by law. Official records of testimony shall be transcribed only on order of the court.
PERTAINING TO CINS/FINS PROCEEDINGS (Child/Family in need of services)
RULE 8.625. GENERAL PROVISIONS FOR HEARINGS – (EXCERPT)
(f) Record. A record of the testimony in all hearings shall be made by an official court reporter, a court-approved stenographer, or a recording device. The records of testimony shall be preserved as required by law. Official records of testimony shall be transcribed only on order of the court.
Lee, Glades, Hendry Branch Office
Court Administration, 3rd Floor
1700 Monroe Street
Fort Myers, Florida 33901
Phone: (239) 533-8207
Fax: 239) 485-2524
Charlotte Branch Office
Court Administration, 2nd Floor
Charlotte County Justice Center
350 East Marion Avenue
Phone: (941) 637-2110
Fax: (941) 637-2283
Collier Branch Office
Collier County Government Complex
3315 Tamiami Trail East, Suite 501
Naples, FL 34112
Phone: (239) 252-8474
Fax: (239) 252-2609