Back to Back Issues Page
The FALDP Docket -- Florida Association of Legal Document Preparers Monthly Newsletter
August 14, 2019

Florida Association of Legal Document Preparers

The FALDP Docket

Volume 9 Issue 8; August 2019

This is our monthly newsletter. We publish this for the benefit of FALDP members, legal document preparers, and friends. Published monthly since May, 2010


Annual Conference

September 14 in Daytona Beach

Dear FALDP Members & Document Preparers,
If you attend any conference this year, make it this one. This is our 10th Annual Conference, and it represents an important milestone in our industry. I hope you feel the same. We take this time each year to get acquainted with our peers and visit with our colleagues. New members and long time members alike have expressed to me how much they learn and gain at each conference.

I look forward to meeting you for the first time, or seeing you again, in Daytona Beach on September 14.

Warm Regards,

Ruth Tick, Director FALDP

Register Today! This year on Saturday, September 14, 2019 we are hosting our 10th Annual FALDP Conference. We are celebrating our journey – where we started, where we are now, and where we're going – as a group, as document preparers and as business owners. The FALDP mission is a journey. We have only begun, there is much to do. We hope that the confidence gained through education and knowledge will empower consumers, so they may have a fighting chance to enforce or pursue their rights in a court of law.


  • 9:00 – Introduce the Day – FALDP Director, Ruth Tick - Welcome to our 10th Annual FALDP Conference! This year's theme is – The Journey Continues – and to that end we have information about the past, present and future of FALDP and our industry to share with you today.

  • 10:00 – Domestic Abuse Awareness – Trish Giaccone, CEO of Family Life Center in Flagler County. Domestic abuse and domestic violence is widespread, insidious, and often hidden. We hope to raise the awareness of our members so that we will be better able to refer victims to appropriate resources.

  • 11:00 – Courtroom Interpreters Program – Candra Erickson, Supervising Court Interpreter, 7th Judicial Circuit - Florida's population includes over 20% of people who speak Spanish at home, and approximately 11% of people living in Florida have limited English proficiency. Courtroom proceedings that can be understood by the affected parties is a right. Courtroom interpreters help protect that right.

  • 12:00 – Lunch – We provide lunch at no charge.

  • 1:00 - History of the Document Preparation Industry – We'll discuss landmark cases, industry pioneers, and FALDP accomplishments to date.

  • 2:00 – How Far Can We Go? – Guest Speaker and FALDP Member, Richard Granat will discuss the future of the document preparation industry.

  • 3:00 - A Look Ahead for FALDP – Ruth Tick will discuss ongoing and future projects to benefit FALDP members and the consumers we serve.

  • 4:00 – Prizes and giveaways, wrap up.

  • It's not about the destination, but the joy of the journey.

  • When & Where: Our conference will be at the Fountain Beach Resort in Daytona Beach on September 14, 2019 – 9:00 – 5:00. Fountain Beach Resort is located at - 313 S Atlantic Ave, Daytona Beach, FL 32118 Details of our agenda will be posted soon.

  • Cost - $95. for the conference.
  • Combo Rate - $189. for conference + membership (new or renewal) + Avoid UPL Course
  • Accommodations at the Fountain Beach Resort will be discounted to only $69. per night for conference attendees.

  • The conference registration form is up on our Annual Conference 2019 Space is limited so register early! We have seats left, but soon we will not be able to allow anyone to bring a guest at no charge. If you would like to bring a guest (at no charge) please call ahead to make sure we still have space available. First come first served!

    Check the Conference page and our monthly newsletter for ongoing conference updates. We'll send registrants a Conference Info Pack a few weeks before the conference.
    FALDP Conference Fee, Membership Fee, and Avoid UPL! online course ~ $189.00 SEE YOU THERE!

    If you submit payment through this newsletter, don't forget to go back to the Conference Page to submit a conference registration form. The conference fee for members is $95. Go directly to the Annual Conference Page to register and submit payment.

    View of the Fountain Beach Resort from A1A.

    Special Benefit for Conference Attendees

    All conference attendees will be invited to participate in one of our animated marketing videos. An example of one of our marketing videos is linked to this newsletter - "Are You Flying Under the Radar?". The concept is that a group or groups of document preparers will be highlighted in one or more of our videos. Participants will then be able to post the video on their website, on their Facebook page, on their Google My Business listing, or anywhere else that might help them and their colleagues get the word out.

    We'll have a sign up sheet at the conference. If you'd like to participate, think about what you'd want to include - graphics and message.

    Conference Special - Turn Key Bundle

    During the run up to the Annual Conference we will include the $95 conference fee with any new purchase of a Turn Key Business Bundle. Our bundle includes a total of four courses, FALDP membership, and we build a custom website for you. Learn more about our Turn Key Business Bundle. Join us and we'll help you get your business up and running.

    Are You Flying Under the Radar?

    We know that there are a lot of subscribers to this newsletter who watch, read, and wait to join. Now is a good time, the best time to join, in fact. To share with us our 10th Annual FALDP Conference. If you're one of us - JOIN US! Watch the video linked below. Are you flying under the radar?

    If you did not renew your membership...

    Former members whose membership lapsed while in good standing can almost always rejoin automatically. If your membership has lapsed for more than 30 days, you'll need to submit a new membership application so that we have current information.

    If you're not able to renew, have left the state, or have other business or professional obligations that conflict with your membership and do not intend to renew, please let us know. And, please remember that it is your obligation to remove our FALDP logo from all of your advertising as soon as possible. Our logo is a registered mark that we protect. It amounts to infringement if you continue to display our FALDP logo when you are no longer a member. When you joined you agreed to removing our logo from your advertising if your membership ever lapsed. Failure to do so could subject you to fines or a law suit.


    Display the FALDP logo

    & Business presence in Florida

    FALDP logo: As of our last conference in October we decided that all members who have a website are required to display the FALDP logo on their sites. We are making a special marketing effort to distinguish FALDP members from document preparers who are not FALDP members. The goal is to show the world that FALDP members are the best possible choice for document preparation.

    Business presence in Florida - Members who are not physically in Florida are required to maintain a business presence in Florida. This means if you are physically located out of state, you must either form a Florida corporation or Florida LLC, or register as a foreign entity. We check upon renewal, please make sure you're in compliance before you renew.

    Mandatory Course - Avoid UPL!

    Most members have completed this course by now. If you have not yet taken this course, please do so as soon as possible. This is a Members Only course. If you did not purchase this course when you joined, you can register and pay for it inside the Members Only area. Any member who has not taken this course by renewal time, will be required to pay for it a second time. Members who have not completed the course by July 31 may be suspended. Suspension means that your information will be removed from the Member Directory and you'll be required to remove the FALDP logo from yur advertising. Members are required to take this course every year. It is your responsibility to let us know you've completed the course by taking the quiz, completing the essay, and/ or submitting the exit survey. If you have any question as to whether you completed the course - contact us. This course was designed to protect our members from falling into the vast sea of nothingness and confusion, also called a UPL investigation.

    Watch the updated course video: Avoid UPL! Course information

    Feature Article:

    Same Day Divorce - Who Knew?

    Until recently I had no idea that Same Day Divorce was possible anywhere in Florida. Thanks to information provided in our private Facebook Group by Sophia Alexis (Thank you, Sophia!) we learned something new. The information below is copied directly from the website for the Broward County Clerk of Court, and as far as I know, the Same Day Divorce process is only available in Broward County, Read on:

    Parties can file for a Simplified Dissolution of Marriage if the following applies:

  • At least one of the spouses has lived in Florida for the past six months;
  • The parties agree that the marriage cannot be saved;
  • The parties do not have any minor or dependent children together, the wife does not have any minor or dependent children who were born during the marriage, and the wife is not now pregnant;
  • The parties have made satisfactory division of their property and have agreed as to payment of their joint obligations;
  • Neither party is seeking support (alimony) from the other spouse;
  • You are willing to give up your right to trial and appeal and
  • All other facts set forth in Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure Form 12.901(a) Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage are true.

    If you are filing a Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage, you can get divorced on the same day. You can only file a Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage if no children have been born during the marriage who are currently under the age of eighteen, and no children are expected by either party. Both parties must sign the Petition. A Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage may be filed in person or electronically. The instructions and procedures for both appear below.

    In Person Filing

    **If you are filing a Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage in person, you may do so Monday through Friday at the Broward County Clerk of the Court located at 201 S.E. 6th Street, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33301. You must file your petition before 10:00 a.m. -Both parties must be physically present and each must present a valid form of State of Florida Photo Identification -Upon filing, ask the Clerk of Court for a True Copy of the Petition or Settlement Agreement, and bring the True Copy to Unified Family Court Case Management on the 19th Floor in Room 19130. -Unified Family Court Case Management will review your paperwork to ensure your case is ready for a Final Hearing before a Family Court Judge. - If all of your paperwork is complete and your case is ready, you will then be brought to a Family Court Judge to conduct your Final Hearing. If you need an interpreter, you must bring one with you.

    Electronic Filing

    ***If you are filing a Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage using the E-Filing Portal, both Parties can show up in person Monday through Friday at the Broward County Clerk of the Courts located at 201 S.E. 6th Street, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33301 within ten (10) days after submission of the electronic filing and no later than 10:00 a.m. on any given day. -Inform the Clerk of Court that you electronically filed your Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage. Provide the Clerk of the Court the e-filing reference number and ask for a True Copy of the Petition or Settlement Agreement. Bring the True Copy to Unified Family Court Case Management on the 19th Floor in Room 19130. -Both Parties must be physically present and present a valid form of State of Florida Photo Identification -Unified Family Court Case Management will review your paperwork to ensure your case is ready for a Final Hearing before a Family Court Judge. - If all of your paperwork is complete and your case is ready, you will be brought to a Family Court Judge to conduct your Final Hearing. If you need an interpreter, you must bring one with you.

    Disclaimer: There may be exceptional circumstances that prevent you from obtaining a divorce on the same day. In such circumstances, you will be directed to appear before a Family Court Judge on a specific date and time.

    Ruth Recommends:

    TSYS - Merchant Account

    I highly recommend TSYS to use for your business merchant account. Compared to Paypal - much less expensive, light years better customer service, and far more convenient. Give me a call, and I'll put you in touch with my account representative. 800-515-0496.

    Parenting Course

    Parental Education and Family Stabilization Course is mandatory for all divorcing couples who have children; and all people seeking a paternity action. The cost is $29.99 and $14.99 for indigent. We have started a pilot program to reward members for referrals. Within the next month or two any member who would like will be able to participate. Here's the link directly to the - Parenting Course

    Private Investigation Services

    Do you or your document preparation customers need help from a Private Investigator: Dan Womack can help with locations for child support, missing spouse, and other services. Dan is a licensed Florida Private Investigator and a former FALDP member. Contact him directly Womack PI Office: (772) 672-4844
    Fax: (772) 672-7130

    Freedom Voice

    I also highly recommend Freedom Voice for your toll free service. I have used Freedom Voice for the past eight years, and have never had an issue with their service. Learn more here - Freedom Voice

    Don't have a site yet? Try Monarch Web Strategies

    Horizon Research Network is one of our associated sites which includes our design services. We build business websites for FALDP members for only $500, which includes your domain name and first month's hosting. And, have you seen our whiteboard videos online?We can create a custom whiteboard video to promote your business. Once built its yours to use in any of your advertising or promotions. Contact us for a custom quote.

    Have you signed?

    Please sign and share!

    We have 446 signatures - help us reach 500!

    So close - yet so far away.

    Slowly but surely, we're reaching our goal. Never forget about the story of the tortoise and the hare. FALDP published a petition asking the Florida Bar to do the following:

    1. Investigate UPL when there is consumer harm. Not when there is "potential" harm.

    2. If the Florida Bar demands that we follow their rules, make those rules clear, and set out in a fashion in which document preparers can easily find and refer to the rules.

    3. Lighten up on the investigation of document preparers altogether. We feel we are being bullied and harassed by an entity that does not supervise us. The Florida Bar is authorized to investigate UPL, but putting document preparers out of business is counter productive all around.

    4. Give us some recognition for what we do. We are part of the solution to the ongoing justice gap. Until consumers are being served fully, there is no need for us to be perceived as a threat to lawyers.

    The petition would not embed in this newsletter, here is the link to the change .org petition Every signature counts. We now have 446 signatures. Please keep signing and sharing. Slowly ... but surely, we'll reach our goal. Who won the race? The tortoise or the hare?

    FALDP Private Facebook Group

    About one third of our membership has joined the FALDP private Facebook group. We created it to make it easier to interact with each other. So far, people have given work referrals to one another; asked questions to the group; received help in locating a form; and discussed various issues. If you're working toward FALDP Certification, you earn one CEU just by joining the group. So, what are you waiting for? Look for the private group after going to the official FALDP Facebook page at FALDP,LLC on Facebook.

    Member's Announcements & Contributions

    Have something to share?

    We accept member's announcements and appreciate your contributions. If you have an announcement about your business, an expansion of services, moving your offices, or winning awards, please send us the information and we'll include it in our newsletter. Your announcement needs to be pertinent to your business, we are unable to include announcements about other trade associations, clubs or groups.

    If you would like to write an article, editorial, opinion piece, or web page please let us know. We are always in need of fresh information and insights.

    FALDP Contact Information:
    Main number – (941)237-0951
    Toll free - (800)515-0496
    Email –

    Back to Back Issues Page