The mainstream media today seems to be abuzz with the idea that Zimmerman can and will be sued civilly by the Martin family.
My immediate reaction to this was to say "doesn't Florida law provide civil immunity if he's found not guilty?" The answer is "yes" but it's not that simple. I'm pretty sure that immunity doesn't immediately attach just because he was found not guilty in criminal court, but I could be wrong.
Here's the FL statute "Florida Statute 776.032 Immunity from criminal prosecution and civil action for justifiable use of force.— (1) A person who uses force as permitted in s. 776.012, s. 776.013, or s. 776.031 is justified in using such force and is immune from criminal prosecution and civil action for the use of such force."
Keep in mind however that the jury did not actually come out and say "he acted in justifiable self-defense, that's why we ruled not guilty." It's a reasonable inference that this is why they ruled as they did, but legally speaking what they did was to rule him not guilty of manslaughter and 2nd degree murder.
IANAL, but I would guess that a civil suit CAN be brought against Zimmerman, at which time his lawyers will use 776.032 and file a motion arguing civil immunity at a pre-trial hearing. (much like there was a pretrial hearing on Stand Your Ground in the criminal case which ended up waived) This would be a pre-trial hearing in a civil court, so it would not be before the same judge that presided upon his criminal case.
Now, One would think that any judge worth a damn would summarily grand such a motion. The standard of proof civilly is lower, and O'Mara should have no problem showing at a hearing that Zimmerman was justified in using deadly force. I would think it'd be open / shut, but with the politics involved in this case who the hell knows.