Petition for a Writ of Mandamus Challenging a Prisoner Disciplinary Action Denied As Time Barred
In Kalway v. Singletary, 708 So. 2d 267 (Fla. 1998), a prisoner filed a petition for a writ of mandamus challenging a prisoner disciplinary action by the Department of Corrections.
The circuit court denied the writ as time barred under section 95.11(8), Florida Statutes (1995), which states that actions challenging prisoner disciplinary proceedings must be brought within thirty days after the final disposition of the proceeding.
Upon review, this Court held that the statute did not violate the separation of powers doctrine.
The Court stated that people seeking extraordinary relief in Florida courts must comply with the general filing requirements--including time restrictions--set forth in Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.630 (governing actions for the issuance of writs of mandamus, prohibition, quo warranto, certiorari, and habeas corpus). See id. at 268.
Rule 1.630(c) provides:
"A complaint shall be filed within the time provided by law."
Therefore, this Court held that the specific "time provided by law" for prisoners seeking relief from disciplinary action taken by the Department of Corrections is set forth in section 95.11(8). See 708 So. 2d at 268.
This Court added:
This interplay between rule 1.630 and section 95.11(8) is not anomalous and does not constitute a separation of powers violation.
As a practical matter, the Court on occasion has deferred to the expertise of the legislature in implementing its rules of procedure.
The setting of an interim time frame for challenging the Department's disciplinary action following the exhaustion of intra-departmental proceedings is a technical matter not outside the purview of the legislature.
We do not view such action as an intrusion on this Court's jurisdiction over the practice and procedure in Florida courts. Id. at 269.
Prior to this Court's opinion in Kalway, rule 9.100, entitled "Original Proceedings," was amended to state:
(a) Applicability. This rule applies to those proceedings that invoke the jurisdiction of the courts . . . for the issuance of writs of mandamus, prohibition, quo warranto, certiorari, and habeas corpus, and all writs necessary to the complete exercise of the courts' jurisdiction . . . .
(c) . . . the following shall be filed within 30 days of rendition of the order to be reviewed:
(4) a petition challenging an order of the Department of Corrections entered in prisoner disciplinary proceedings.