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Florida Judge Denies Release of Bob Saget’s Records

February 8, 2022
Colson Hicks Eidson

On January 9th,, 2022, Bob Saget was found dead in an Orlando hotel room. An autopsy later revealed that the late actor had sustained a head injury, which resulted in his fatality. No other information has been released at this time.

Many records indicate that Saget suffered from severe skull fractures and died in his sleep from the sustained injuries. The records, as they have been released, do not show if any foul play or negligence was involved. This could be a potential wrongful death lawsuit. However, due to Florida law, the records are not allowed to be released to the public without permission from the family.

Bob Saget’s Death Investigation Records

Bob Saget’s family filed a complaint on February 15, 2022, seeking an injunction to stop the release of his death investigation records. The complaint states “that certain Records prepared during the course of Defendants’ investigations into Mr. Saget’s death are confidential and exempt from disclosure to the public under Florida’s Public Records Act[.].”

The court subsequently filed an Order Granting Emergency Motion for Temporary Injunction on February 16th, 2022. The court found that the family met all four elements of the law, which entitles them to a temporary injunction. The injunction prevents the release of the death investigation records to any member of the public, regardless of their request. The injunction will stay in effect until otherwise ordered by the court.

Florida Law Regarding Public Records

Prior to 2001, the records of Bob Saget’s death would have been released to the public in Florida (many other states still allow the release of such records). However, due to legislation that passed in 2001 after NASCAR driver Earnhardt’s death, photos and videos related to autopsies are no longer public record.

The Florida Public Records Act allows for certain records to be released to the public while ensuring other records are exempt from this policy. Under the statute, a party must prove why the records should not be released to the public. In the case of Saget, the family showed in their complaint that they would “suffer irreparable harm in the form of extreme mental pain, anguish, and emotion distress” should the records be released. Additionally, the court agreed that the family has a “clear legal right or interest” in this matter, there is “no adequate remedy at law,” and “that the public interest will not be disserved by the entry of the temporary injunction.”

Under the law, when a court agrees that death investigation records should not be released to the public, it includes: audio recordings, video recordings, photographs, protected autopsy information, and all other information protected under the statute.

Contact Colson Hicks Eidson Personal Injury Attorneys

The Florida personal injury attorneys at Colson Hicks Eidson handle a variety of matters including wrongful death and severe head trauma cases. They are well-versed in the statutory provisions surrounding personal injury lawsuits and all governing laws.

If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident that led to a serious brain injury or wrongful death, contact one of our litigation attorneys today. To discuss your case with an attorney, contact us by phone at (305) 476-7400 or by reaching out to us online.