By a vote of 29-11, the Florida Senate passed its version of HB 969 and sent the bill back to the House for consideration of the rewritten version. At this point, there are only two legislative options remaining: (1) the House passes it without any changes, or (2) no privacy law is adopted in Florida during this legislative session. There is not enough time for the House to change the law again and have Senate reconsider/pass it by tomorrow. The odds are high that the House will pass HB 969 tomorrow and Governor DeSantis will sign it.

Assuming that’s the case, advocates on all sides of this law will have “won” and “lost” something, but the consequences of these last few months will have an enormous impact on privacy law moving forward for much more significant reasons than the bill itself.
Continue Reading Florida Privacy Bill Passes Penultimate Legislative Hurdle; Significant Implications Follow

With only three days left in the legislative session, and on the morning when my Op-Ed was published by the Tallahassee Democrat, the Florida Senate weighed in on the House’s passage of HB 969.  There were two ways it could have done that: (1) take the House version sent to the Senate via messages and make changes to and vote on that version; or (2) ignore the version provided via messages and simply pass the pending version of SB 1734 in the Senate then send that version to the House via messages. It chose path #1. Moments ago, the  Senate passed a strike-all amendment that struck the entirety of HB 969 and replaced it with a modified version of SB 1734. A separate post will discuss the modified version of SB 1734 in greater detail, but this post briefly explains where things stand now and what to expect next.
Continue Reading What Just Happened With Florida Privacy Legislation?

Within the week, we will know whether Florida will adopt the most aggressive privacy law in the country, something more moderate, or nothing at all. But an issue that has not received enough attention is the reason HB 969 and SB 1734 have received more support in a “red” state than any other privacy law. It is a reason that will come full circle to adversely impact the contingency of supporters using privacy laws as a way to attack “Big Tech.”
Continue Reading The Long Game: Why Parler Has Everything To Do With Florida’s Privacy Legislation

Today, the Florida House of Representatives Commerce Committee voted unanimously to allow HB 969, which would be the most aggressive privacy law in the country, to move forward for a full House floor vote. This post explains what happened, what will happen next, and some of the unique political forces and considerations behind HB 969.    
Continue Reading Have Privacy Advocates Found A New Path Forward in Red States?

The Florida Senate appears poised to hit the brakes on privacy legislation that has thus far soared through committees in both legislative chambers.  The House version (HB 969) and the Senate Version (SB 1734) would have not only created the same consumer privacy rights as the CCPA, the bills would have created massive private rights of action, far broader than any other privacy law in the United States.  

Today, a “strike all” Committee Amendment was offered to the Senate version.  TRANSLATION – the Senate Rules Committee, where SB 1734 is now pending, is proposing a “friendly amendment” that would strike the entirety of SB 1734 and replace it with a new version.
Continue Reading Momentum Slows for Florida Privacy Law; What’s Next?

The Florida Senate’s version of a new comprehensive privacy law (a.k.a. the “Florida Privacy Protection Act” (FPPA)) passed unscathed out of the Senate’s Committee on Commerce and Tourism yesterday. The bill’s sponsor fought off two proposed amendments: one that would have eliminated the private right of action and a second that would have required more than just a revenue threshold for the law to apply. This post describes what makes the FPPA more aggressive than the CCPA, it provides a summary of the Senate Committee hearing, and it shares some late-breaking news about the House version (HB 969).
Continue Reading Senate Version of Florida Privacy Law Moves Forward; House Version Makes Class-Action Lawsuits Even Easier

The Florida Legislature is considering a comprehensive privacy law (HB 969) that would fundamentally change the landscape of how/whether companies do business in Florida.  The bill is largely a “cut-and-paste” of the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), but in some ways, it goes further than the CCPA and would make Florida’s law the most aggressive privacy law in the United States.  As I have previously described, the bill would create significant privacy rights for Florida residents, including the right to know what personal information companies are collecting about them, the source of that information, how the information is being shared, a right to request a copy of that information, and a right to delete/correct that information.  But the law goes too far – placing a crushing financial burden on most small and medium-sized businesses and creating a private right of action that dwarfs California’s version. This post analyzes the five most significant problems with HB 969 and proposes solutions.

Continue Reading Five Ways To Improve Florida’s Proposed Privacy Law