Florida Changes its Summary Judgment Rule, and an Old Tool in the Litigator's Kit Just Got Sharpened

Resolving civil litigation at the summary judgment stage is beneficial for several reasons, including (1) reducing overall litigation costs, (2) streamlining the substantive issues in a case, and (3) avoiding the time and resources necessary to conduct a jury trial—for not only the parties, but also the courts and would-be jurors. Unfortunately, Florida’s summary judgment standard has historically made it exceedingly difficult to prevail on a motion for summary judgment. The odds that such a motion would be granted—and survive appeal—ranged from slim to none. But it seems the times, they are a-changin’.