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Lippincott Article on Judicial Disqualification

Featured in The Florida Bar Journal

A key ingredient to our judicial system is the promise that the judiciary will be neutral regarding the subject matter and between the parties. Indeed, judges have the responsibility to recuse themselves from the proceedings if they have a relationship with the subject matter, party, attorney, or witness. If a judge fails to act, it is the attorney’s duty to seek judicial disqualification.

Ms. Lippincott’s article “Don’t Let the Blindfold Slip: A Guide to Judicial Disqualification” is featured in the April 2012 Florida Bar Journal. This article provides Florida attorneys with detailed assistance on when and how to seek judicial disqualification.  Click here to read the article.

Recent Recognition

Florida Trend’s Legal Elite and Thompson Reuters’ Florida Super Lawyers have both selected Marcia K. Lippincott in Appellate Practice for 2019. She is grateful to be honored with this repeated recognition from her peers and these two organizations.

Recent Cases

Mattison v. Mattison, 266 So. 3d 258 (Fla. 5th DCA 2019)

Ms. Lippincott successfully represented the former husband in this appeal. The Fifth District Court of Appeal found the former husband’s income was improperly calculated leading to the incorrect determination of child support. Arrearages of child support must be appropriately measured, bear prejudgment interest, and paid as quickly as the payer’s ability permits.

Assets dissipated pending trial may not be included in equitable distribution unless intentional misconduct is proven. Valuation of marital assets requires competent, substantial evidence. Equity in the marital home should be computed based upon all appropriate factors.

The trial court’s child support, equitable distribution, income findings, and attorney fee decisions were reversed and remanded for further proceedings. To read the decision, click here.

Walsh v. Walsh, 262 So. 3d 212 (Fla. 5th DCA 2018)

Ms. Lippincott represented the former wife regarding the interpretation of a marital settlement agreement. The Fifth District Court of Appeal rejected the trial court’s finding of an alimony overpayment; ruled that extrinsic evidence should have been allowed regarding the parties’ intent; and also decided that the parties’ agreement did not waive the right for attorney fees in accordance with a party’s financial need and ability to pay as provided by F.S. §61.16.

The trial court’s denial of the former wife’s enforcement action, including her attorney fee claim, was reversed and remanded. To read the decision, click here.

Hall v. Marion County Board of County Commissioners, 236 So. 3d 1147 (Fla. 5th DCA 2018)

County Attorney Matthew Minter, together with Ms. Lippincott, successfully defended partial summary judgment for the County defeating Plaintiff’s gender discrimination claim in the hiring of the Fire Chief.

Such a claim, according to the Florida Civil Rights Act, can be proven by direct or circumstantial evidence. There was no direct evidence of discrimination in this case. The three-step federal process, known as the McDonnell-Douglas standard, governs the evaluation of circumstantial evidence.

Here, although the Plaintiff established a prima face case, the County had legitimate, non-discriminatory reasons for its promotion decision, and the Plaintiff failed to demonstrate those reasons were a pretext or disguise for discrimination.

The Plaintiff did not argue her retaliation claim below, and therefore it was remanded for determination. To read the decision, click here.

Stark v. Stark, 192 So. 3d 632 (Fla. 5th DCA 2016)

Ms. Lippincott represented the former wife in challenging the award of bridge-the-gap alimony and durational alimony, rather than permanent alimony. The Fifth District Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s decision, finding that it was an abuse of discretion to award durational rather than permanent alimony. To read the decision, click here.