Why You Should Care About Florida’s Lawsuits

Gavel and Scales of Justice

There are always ongoing lawsuits involving the State of Florida. Lawsuits are expensive, whether they are brought by the State or by others challenging the State’s laws. Either way, they are paid for at taxpayer expense, which is the most obvious reason you should want to be informed about them. In this post, you will learn why else should you care.

Lawsuits Brought by the Attorney General

Voters elect the Attorney General, an independent member of the Florida Cabinet, who can initiate lawsuits on behalf of the State at her discretion.

When the Attorney General and the Governor are from the same political party, lawsuits initiated by the Attorney General can seem to have been brought at the Governor’s behest for political reasons. See, for example, this 2021 article about Florida lawsuits challenging federal vaccine mandates.

The Attorney General also defends the constitutionality of state law, represents the State when criminals appeal their convictions in state and federal courts, enforces its antitrust laws, and fights to protect its citizens from health risks, among other duties. See, for example, this 2022 news release about opioid litigation.

For more on the Florida Attorney General, click here.

Lawsuits Heard on Appeal

In State Courts

You should also be aware of litigation being heard by the Florida Supreme Court or District Courts of Appeal because voters have the opportunity to remove appellate court judges through merit retention elections.

In Federal Courts

Voters do not directly elect or have the opportunity to cast a merit retention vote for United States Supreme Court justices, court of appeals judges, or district court judges. They are nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. But in voting for the President and their state’s U.S. Senators, voters have an indirect, but important, role to play because federal judges typically serve for life.

Learn more about the Florida Court System here. For more on the U.S. Court System, click here. For a comparison of the U.S. and State Court systems, click here.

Scroll to Top