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November 18, 2019     
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Clerk and Comptroller - Duties and Responsibilities

The Florida Constitution Article V, Section 16 established the Clerks of the Circuit Court in the State of Florida: "There shall be in each county a clerk of the circuit court who shall be selected pursuant to the provisions of Article VIII section 1.".

The Clerk of Court is a vital part of the local court system, responsible for the coordination of jurors, swearing in court witnesses and recording evidence presented at trial. Any fines, fees or assessments collected by the Clerk are distributed to state and local governments according to law.

The Clerk’s Office has the duty of maintaining and preserving the official documents and records of this county’s rich history. In recent years, your Clerk has embraced technology to provide residents with greater and more efficient access to these documents. Electronic imaging and retrieval processes now allow for convenient online access to many real estate documents, criminal and civil court listings and volumes of other public documents under the Clerk’s custody and control. Innovative security measures are used to keep your personal information safe.

One of the most important functions of the Clerk of Court is maintaining the financial integrity of the county. Your Clerk recognizes that local citizens have entrusted public funds to local government leaders. As the chief financial officer, or comptroller, for the county, the Clerk serves as accountant, auditor and custodian of your tax dollars and provides services to each of the county's departments. Your Clerk's Office strives to efficiently and effectively manage local government finances so that local residents and communities are better served.

Florida Statutes Chapter 28 defines many of the duties for the Clerk of the Circuit Court. Below are just a few of the many duties that the Clerk performs.

As Clerk of the Circuit and County Court

  • Official representation at all sessions of court
  • File indictments, information and verdicts
  • Process all civil and criminal cases
  • Prepare appellate records
  • Jury Manager for Escambia County
  • Receive and disburse moneys for fines, court costs, forfeitures, fees, service charges, alimony and child support, victim restitution and certain moneys to be held in trusts
  • Conduct mortgage foreclosure sales and estate partition sales
  • File, secure, and dispose of all evidence entered by the court
  • Assist victims of abuse in completing paperwork necessary to file Domestic and Repeat Violence actions
  • Assist in completing paperwork necessary to file for a Simplified Divorce
  • Assist in completing paperwork required to file a Small Claims action
  • Assist in completing paperwork required to file a Disposition of Personal Property
  • Audit each initial and annual guardianship report, advising the court of the audit results
  • Take Last Will and Testaments for deposit

As County Auditor

  • Pre-audit all County expenditures before payment
  • Review proposed contracts before adoption
  • Conduct internal post audits to determine the sufficiency of financial controls
  • Prepare reports suggesting improvements to management

As Accountant and Custodian of County Funds

  • Provide accounting services to all departments under the Board of County Commissioners
  • Provide an accounting system for all fiscal changes implemented by the Board
  • Establish and review internal control procedures for all cash collection sites
  • Handle investments of available county funds
  • Provide financial reporting to the Board and all federal and state agencies
  • Process accounts payable
  • Process the County payroll

As Recorder of Deeds

  • Record and index deeds, mortgages, and descriptions of all county property
  • Process tax deed applications and conduct sales
  • Record public defender liens and judgments entered by the court, record tax liens and claims against an estate, instruments of conveyance, agreements, contracts, maps and plats of subdivisions and surveys
  • Maintain a public microfilm library

As Clerk to the Board of County Commissioners

  • Attend meetings of the Board of County Commissioners and committees of the board
  • Produce, record, index and distribute the official minutes of these meetings
  • Maintain legal custody of the Official County Seal
  • Maintain custody of all County resolutions, ordinances, and contracts
  • Process appeals for Value Adjustment Board
  • Attestation

Other Duties

  • Process marriage license applications and solemnize marriages upon request
  • Compile and provide statistical data for State of Florida agencies
  • Serve as central depository for court ordered child support and alimony payments
  • Maintain records storage facilities