Definition of Photographs – Florida Courts
Definitions and brief explanations of how the Florida courts
accept and define photographs.
90.951 Definitions.—For purposes of this chapter:
(1) "Writings" and "recordings" include letters, words, or numbers, or their equivalent, set down by handwriting, typewriting, printing, photostating, photography, magnetic impulse, mechanical or electronic recording, or other form of data compilation, upon paper, wood, stone, recording tape, or other materials.
(2) "Photographs" include still photographs, X-ray films, videotapes, and motion pictures.
(3) An "original" of a writing or recording means the writing or recording itself, or any counterpart intended to have the same effect by a person executing or issuing it. An "original" of a photograph includes the negative or any print made from it. If data are stored in a computer or similar device, any printout or other output readable by sight and shown to reflect the data accurately is an "original."
(4) "Duplicate" includes:
(a) A counterpart produced by the same impression as the original, from the same matrix; by means of photography, including enlargements and miniatures; by mechanical or electronic rerecording; by chemical reproduction; or by other equivalent technique that accurately reproduces the original; or
(b) An executed carbon copy not intended by the parties to be an original.
History.—s. 1, ch. 76-237; s. 1, ch. 77-77; s. 22, ch. 78-361; s. 1, ch. 78-379.
90.952 Requirement of originals.—Except as otherwise provided by statute, an original writing, recording, or photograph is required in order to prove the contents of the writing, recording, or photograph.
History.—s. 1, ch. 76-237; s. 1, ch. 77-77; s. 1, ch. 77-174; s. 22, ch. 78-361; s. 1, ch. 78-379.
90.953 Admissibility of duplicates.—A duplicate is admissible to the same extent as an original, unless:
(1) The document or writing is a negotiable instrument as defined in s. 673.1041, a security as defined in s. 678.1021, or any other writing that evidences a right to the payment of money, is not itself a security agreement or lease, and is of a type that is transferred by delivery in the ordinary course of business with any necessary endorsement or assignment.
(2) A genuine question is raised about the authenticity of the original or any other document or writing.
(3) It is unfair, under the circumstance, to admit the duplicate in lieu of the original.
History.—s. 1, ch. 76-237; s. 1, ch. 77-77; s. 22, ch. 78-361; s. 1, ch. 78-379; s. 57, ch. 92-82; s. 29, ch. 99-2.
90.954 Admissibility of other evidence of contents.—The original of a writing, recording, or photograph is not required, except as provided in s. 90.953, and other evidence of its contents is admissible when:
(1) All originals are lost or destroyed, unless the proponent lost or destroyed them in bad faith.
(2) An original cannot be obtained in this state by any judicial process or procedure.
(3) An original was under the control of the party against whom offered at a time when that party was put on notice by the pleadings or by written notice from the adverse party that the contents of such original would be subject to proof at the hearing, and such original is not produced at the hearing.
(4) The writing, recording, or photograph is not related to a controlling issue.
History.—s. 1, ch. 76-237; s. 1, ch. 77-77; s. 1, ch. 77-174; s. 22, ch. 78-361; s. 1, ch. 78-379; s. 502, ch. 95-147.
90.955 Public records.—
(1) The contents of an official record or of a document authorized to be recorded or filed, and actually recorded or filed, with a governmental agency, either federal, state, county, or municipal, in a place where official records or documents are ordinarily filed, including data compilations in any form, may be proved by a copy authenticated as provided in s. 90.902, if otherwise admissible.
(2) If a party cannot obtain, by the exercise of reasonable diligence, a copy that complies with subsection (1), other evidence of the contents is admissible.
History.—s. 1, ch. 76-237; s. 1, ch. 77-77; s. 22, ch. 78-361; s. 1, ch. 78-379.
92.29 Photographic or electronic copies.—Photographic reproductions or reproductions through electronic recordkeeping systems made by any federal, state, county, or municipal governmental board, department or agency, in the regular course of business, of any original record, document, paper or instrument in writing or in an electronic recordkeeping system, which is, or may be, required or authorized to be made, filed, or recorded with that board, department or agency shall in all cases and in all courts and places be admitted and received as evidence with a like force and effect as the original would be, whether the original record, document, paper, or instrument in writing or in an electronic recordkeeping system is in existence or not.
History.—s. 1, ch. 20866, 1941; s. 7, ch. 94-348.
92.38 Comparison of disputed writings.—Comparison of a disputed writing with any writing proved to the satisfaction of the judge to be genuine, shall be permitted to be made by the witnesses; and such writings, and the evidence of witnesses respecting the same, may be submitted to the jury, or to the court in case of a trial by the court, as evidence of the genuineness, or otherwise, of the writing in dispute.
History.—s. 55, ch. 1096, 1861; RS 1121; GS 1539; RGS 2739; CGL 4411.
Note.—Former s. 90.20.
92.18 Certificate of state officer.—The certificate of any state officer, under seal of office, as to any official act occurring in the course of the official business of the office in which the state officer presides, shall be prima facie evidence of such fact.
History.—s. 1, ch. 3250, 1881; RS 1113; GS 1525; RGS 2725; CGL 4396; s. 510, ch. 95-147.
92.05 Final judgments and decrees of courts of record.—All final judgments and decrees heretofore or hereafter rendered and entered in courts of record of this state, and certified copies thereof, shall be admissible as prima facie evidence in the several courts of this state of the entry and validity of such judgments and decrees. For the purposes of this section, a court of record shall be taken and construed to mean any court other than a municipal court or the Metropolitan Court of Dade County.
History.—s. 1, ch. 4723, 1899; GS 1522; RGS 2722; CGL 4390; s. 7, ch. 22858, 1945; s. 1, ch. 67-362; s. 15, ch. 73-334.
92.06 Judgments and decrees of United States District Courts.—All final judgments and decrees heretofore or hereafter to be rendered and entered in the United States District Courts of this state and certified copies thereof are declared to be admissible as prima facie evidence in the several courts of this state of the entry and validity of such judgments and decrees.
History.—s. 1, ch. 14748, 1931; CGL 1936 Supp. 4391(1).
92.07 Judgments and decrees of this state.—The recitals in all judgments and decrees of the Supreme Court and of the several circuit courts of this state, when such judgment or decree appears regular and has been recorded as provided by law for more than 20 years, shall be admissible in evidence as prima facie proof of the truth of the facts so recited. Either party to any suit at law or equity may offer a properly certified copy of such judgment or decree entered and recorded more than 20 years prior to the institution of the suit in which the same is offered, and such copy shall be admissible in evidence as prima facie proof of the facts in said judgment or decree set forth; provided, however, the party offering the same shall at least 10 days before the trial of the suit in which this copy is offered in evidence give notice to the opposite side of the intention to offer such copy in evidence and the purpose for which the same will be offered, and deliver with such notice a copy of the judgment or decree; provided, that nothing in this law shall render admissible in evidence any instrument of writing based on any judgment, deed of conveyance or power of attorney included in this law where any such instrument of writing has heretofore been brought in question in any action at law or in equity in any suit now pending or heretofore decided.
History.—s. 1, ch. 10111, 1925; CGL 4391.