Posted by Nydia Streets of Streets Law in Florida Divorce

It is important for parties to bring court reporters to their Florida family law hearings as a type of insurance. This is because if you want to appeal a family court ruling, you usually cannot do so without a transcript of the proceedings. This is illustrated in the case Joyner v. Worley, 1D17-3540 Joyner v. Worley (Fla. 1st DCA 2019) in which the former husband appealed an order but did not provide a transcript of the proceedings.

The parties divorced around 2005 and child support was ordered as part of their final judgment. In 2012, the former husband filed a petition to modify his child support obligation, and the former wife countered for an increase based on the children’s increased expenses. The former wife’s petition was eventually granted and the former husband was ordered to pay over $100,000 in attorneys’ fees to the former wife.

When the former husband appealed, the appellate court noted the absence of a transcript and held, “Our review is hindered by the lack of a transcript. Some of the father's appellate arguments are facially plausible, but without a transcript we cannot determine whether many of the asserted errors were preserved for appeal and—if they were—whether they were indeed errors.” However, the court did overturn the attorneys’ fee ruling, holding, “We agree with the father that the trial court erred in awarding attorney's fees and costs without first conducting a hearing and offering the father the opportunity to dispute the reasonableness of the fees claimed.”

Budgeting for a court reporter to attend all hearings in your case is important to preserve your right to appeal your Florida family law case. Schedule a consultation with a Miami divorce lawyer to go over all of the ways you can protect your right to appeal.