Favreau v. Favreau, 940 So.2d 1188 (Fla. 5th DCA Oct 06, 2006)

Pro se (self-represented) litigants are not sensitive to the sanctions normally applied to counsel for bringing frivolous actions, and indigent litigants are not sensitive to fee-shifting or fines.  Little wonder then that an out of control pro se litigant can be especially difficult for both courts and opposing parties to contend with.  (For a recent in depth analysis of this issue from Harvard Law student J. Caleb Donaldson, see "Vexatious Pro Se Civil Litigants in the Massachusetts Courts" (2006)).

The linked-to case is a good example of a Florida probate court using its "inherent power" to manage a vexatious pro se litigant.  The next time you’re confronted with the pro se litigant "from hell," you’ll be happy you read this opinion .  .  .

The order is not a reviewable non-final order. See Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.130. The remaining avenue for review is certiorari but Edna has failed to establish the requisites for issuance of the writ in this case. A court has the inherent power to prevent abuse of court procedure which interferes with the effective administration of justice. Platel v. Maguire, Voorhis & Wells, P.A., 436 So.2d 303 (Fla. 5th DCA 1983). A requirement that pleadings be accompanied by an attorney’s signature is not a restraint which amounts to a complete denial of access to courts. Id.; May v. Barthet, 886 So.2d 324 (Fla. 4th DCA 2004); see also § 68.093, Fla. Stat. (2005) (the Florida Vexatious Litigant Law). The trial court followed procedural requirements by issuing an order to show cause, affording Edna an opportunity to explain why she should not be barred from future pro se filings. Edna has failed to establish a clear departure from the essential requirements of law resulting in irreparable harm. See Cape Canaveral Hospital, Inc. v. Leal, 917 So.2d 336 (Fla. 5th DCA 2005).

My guess is that the sub-section of § 68.093 alluded to above by the 5th DCA is the following:

(4) In addition to any other relief provided in this section, the court in any judicial circuit may, on its own motion or on the motion of any party, enter a prefiling order prohibiting a vexatious litigant from commencing, pro se, any new action in the courts of that circuit without first obtaining leave of the administrative judge of that circuit. Disobedience of such an order may be punished as contempt of court by the administrative judge of that circuit. Leave of court shall be granted by the administrative judge only upon a showing that the proposed action is meritorious and is not being filed for the purpose of delay or harassment. The administrative judge may condition the filing of the proposed action upon the furnishing of security as provided in this section.