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By Alison Fitzgerald, Center for Public Integrity 

Lawyers wait to sign in for foreclosure hearings at the Palm Beach County Courthouse in West Palm Beach in July. Photo: Alison Fitzgerald/Center for Public Integrity

Lawyers wait to sign in for foreclosure hearings at the Palm Beach County Courthouse in West Palm Beach in July. Photo: Alison Fitzgerald/Center for Public Integrity

Florida homeowners may soon find a more friendly reception in the state’s courtrooms after a state Supreme Court panel found that some judicial practices designed to speed up foreclosure cases may be improper.

The Court’s Local Rules Advisory Committee said last week that a judge’s order in Palm Beach County that allows banks to defeat homeowners’ motions to fight foreclosures in court simply by ignoring them went beyond the judge’s authority. The committee referred the rule to the state Supreme Court for review.

By Alison Fitzgerald, Center for Public Integrity 

Rendering of the new Broward courthouse now under construction.

Rendering of the new Broward courthouse now under construction.

When the Center for Public Integrity last summer requested records from Florida’s 17th judicial circuit regarding the procedures and policies surrounding foreclosure cases, officials were more than happy to comply — for a price.

A price of $132,348, to be exact.