1.470 Exceptions Unnecessary, Jury Instructions

(a) Adverse Ruling. For appellate purposes no exception shall be necessary to any adverse ruling, order, instruction, or thing whatsoever said or done at the trial or prior thereto or after verdict, which was said or done after objection made and considered by the trial court and which affected the substantial rights of the party complaining and which is assigned as error.

(b) Instructions to Jury. The Florida Standard Jury Instructions  appearing on the court’s website at www.floridasupremecourt.org/jury_instructions.shtml shall be used by the trial judges of this state in  instructing the jury in civil actions to the extent that the Standard Jury Instructions are applicable, unless the trial judge determines that an applicable Standard Jury Instruction is erroneous or inadequate. If the trial judge modifies a Standard Jury Instruction or gives such other instruction as the judge determines necessary to accurately and sufficiently instruct the jury, upon timely objection to the  instruction, the trial judge shall state on the record or in a separate order the legal  basis for varying from the Standard Jury Instruction. Similarly, in all circumstances  in which the notes accompanying the Florida Standard Jury Instructions contain a  recommendation that a certain type of instruction not be given, the trial judge shall  follow the recommendation unless the judge determines that the giving of such an instruction is necessary to accurately and sufficiently  instruct the jury, in which event the judge shall give such instruction as the judge  deems appropriate and necessary. If the trial judge does not follow such a  recommendation of the Florida Standard Jury Instructions, upon timely objection  to the instruction, the trial judge shall state on the record or in a separate order the  legal basis of the determination that such instruction is necessary. Not later than at the close of the evidence, the parties shall file written requests that the court instruct the jury on the law set forth in such requests. The court shall then require counsel to appear before it to settle the instructions to be given. At such conference, all objections shall be made and ruled upon and the court shall inform counsel of such instructions as it will give. No party may assign as error the giving of any instruction unless that party objects thereto at such time, or the failure to give any instruction unless that party requested the same. The court shall orally instruct the jury before or after the arguments of counsel and may provide appropriate instructions during the trial. If the instructions are given prior to final argument, the presiding judge shall give the jury final procedural instructions after final arguments are concluded and prior to deliberations. The court shall provide each juror with a written set of the instructions for his or her use in deliberations. The court shall file a copy of such instructions.

(c) Orders on New Trial, Directed Verdicts, etc. It shall not be necessary to object or except to any order granting or denying motions for new trials, directed verdicts, or judgments non obstante veredicto or in arrest of judgment to entitle the party against whom such ruling is made to have the same reviewed by an appellate court.

 

2010 Amendment. 

Portions of form 1.985 were modified and moved to  subdivision (b) of rule 1.470 to require the court to use published standard  instructions where applicable and necessary, to permit the judge to vary from the published standard jury instructions and notes only when necessary to accurately and sufficiently instruct the jury, and to require the parties to object to preserve  error in variance from published standard jury instructions and notes.

 

2014 Amendment. 

Florida Standard Jury Instructions include the Florida Standard Jury Instructions — Contract and Business Cases.

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