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The Florida Statutes

The 2017 Florida Statutes

Title XXXIII
REGULATION OF TRADE, COMMERCE, INVESTMENTS, AND SOLICITATIONS
Chapter 520
RETAIL INSTALLMENT SALES
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F.S. 520.9965
520.9965 Confidentiality of information relating to investigations and examinations.
(1)(a) Except as otherwise provided by this section, information relative to an investigation or examination by the office pursuant to this chapter, including any consumer complaint received by the office or the Department of Financial Services, is confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) until the investigation or examination is completed or ceases to be active. The information compiled by the office in such an investigation or examination shall remain confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) after the office’s investigation or examination is completed or ceases to be active if the office submits the information to any law enforcement or administrative agency for further investigation. Such information shall remain confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) until that agency’s investigation is completed or ceases to be active. For purposes of this section, an investigation or examination shall be considered “active” so long as the office or any law enforcement or administrative agency is proceeding with reasonable dispatch and has a reasonable good faith belief that the investigation or examination may lead to the filing of an administrative, civil, or criminal proceeding or to the denial or conditional grant of a license, registration, or permit. This section shall not be construed to prohibit disclosure of information which is required by law to be filed with the office and which, but for the investigation or examination, would be subject to s. 119.07(1).
(b) Except as necessary for the office to enforce the provisions of this chapter, a consumer complaint and other information relative to an investigation or examination shall remain confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) after the investigation or examination is completed or ceases to be active to the extent disclosure would:
1. Jeopardize the integrity of another active investigation or examination.
2. Reveal the name, address, telephone number, social security number, or any other identifying number or information of any complainant, customer, or account holder.
3. Disclose the identity of a confidential source.
4. Disclose investigative techniques or procedures.
5. Reveal a trade secret as defined in s. 688.002.
(c) In the event that office personnel or personnel of the former Department of Banking and Finance are or have been involved in an investigation or examination of such nature as to endanger their lives or physical safety or that of their families, then the home addresses, telephone numbers, places of employment, and photographs of such personnel, together with the home addresses, telephone numbers, photographs, and places of employment of spouses and children of such personnel and the names and locations of schools and day care facilities attended by the children of such personnel are confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1).
(d) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the office from providing information to any law enforcement or administrative agency. Any law enforcement or administrative agency receiving confidential information in connection with its official duties shall maintain the confidentiality of the information so long as it would otherwise be confidential.
(e) All information obtained by the office from any person which is only made available to the office on a confidential or similarly restricted basis shall be confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1). This exemption shall not be construed to prohibit disclosure of information which is required by law to be filed with the office or which is otherwise subject to s. 119.07(1).
(2) If information subject to subsection (1) is offered in evidence in any administrative, civil, or criminal proceeding, the presiding officer may, in his or her discretion, prevent the disclosure of information which would be confidential pursuant to paragraph (1)(b).
(3) A privilege against civil liability is granted to a person who furnishes information or evidence to the office, unless such person acts in bad faith or with malice in providing such information or evidence.
History.s. 5, ch. 92-9; s. 338, ch. 96-406; s. 1172, ch. 97-103; s. 636, ch. 2003-261.