Updated April 27.  COVID-19 has had a significant impact on the justice system, as shelter-in-place and stay-at-home orders have been declared throughout the country and a National Emergency was declared in mid-March. The judicial response to COVID-19 has varied state-by-state. The National Center for State Courts (NCSC) maintains up to date state profiles briefly summarizing statewide delays or restrictions in response to COVID-19, which can be found here. NCSC has identified five of the most common judicial responses:

  • restricting or ending jury trials
  • suspending in-person proceedings with limited exceptions
  • restricting entrance into courthouses
  • granting extensions for court deadlines
  • encouraging or requiring teleconferences and videoconferences in lieu of hearings.

(“Coronavirus and the courts.” National Center for State Courts, https://www.ncsc.org/pandemic)

Below is a detailed listing of the of the orders and modifications to normal operating procedure currently in effect from state Supreme Courts in response to COVID-19. The orders listed impact statewide court operations, and subsequent orders significantly updating past orders will be added as they come out.

Orders Suspending In-Person Proceedings

Many state supreme courts have issued similar orders suspending in-person proceedings except for certain categories of proceedings considered either high priority or essential.

Below is a typical example of such an order, including the categories of proceedings often deemed essential:

“All in-person proceedings in all state and local courts in Alabama, including, but not limited to, proceedings in the circuit court, district court (including cases on the small claims docket), juvenile court, municipal court, probate court, and appellate courts, are suspended beginning Monday, March 16, 2020 through Thursday, April 16, 2020, subject to the exceptions below.

Exceptions to this suspension of in- person court proceedings include, but are not limited to:

  • Proceedings necessary to protect constitutional rights of criminal defendants, including bond- related matters and plea agreements for incarcerated individuals;
  • Civil and criminal jury trials that are in progress as of March 13, 2020;
  • Proceedings related to protection from abuse;
  • Proceedings related to emergency child custody and protection orders;
  • Department of Human Resources emergency matters related to child protection;
  • Proceedings related to petitions for temporary injunctive relief;
  • Proceedings related to emergency mental health orders;
  • Proceedings related to emergency protection of elderly or vulnerable persons;
  • Proceedings directly related to the COVID- 19 public health emergency;
  • Any emergent proceeding as needed by law enforcement;
  • Other exceptions as approved by the Chief Justice.”

(“Administrative Order Suspending All In-Person Court Proceedings for the Next Thirty Days.” Alabama Supreme Court. March 13, 2020. https://www.alabar.org/assets/2020/03/COV-19-order-FINAL.pdf)

Due to the frequency of these suspension orders—and their relative uniformity—they will be listed below as “standard in-person suspension order” when issued by a supreme court, unless there are significant differences in the suspension.

(Note: more states will continue to be added)

Alabama Supreme Court

[https://www.alabar.org/alabama-state-bar-coronavirus-covid-19-safety-measures/]

Order, March 13, 2020

[https://www.alabar.org/assets/2020/03/COV-19-order-FINAL.pdf]

  • Standard in-person suspension order through Thursday April 16, 2020 (subsequently extended)
  • Any permitted in-court proceeding will be limited to only necessary persons as determined by the trial judge
  • Any deadlines set by or subject to regulation by the court that expire during the period of this order are extended to April 20, 2020

Order No. 2, March 15, 2020

[https://www.alabar.org/assets/2020/03/March-15-2020-order.pdf]

  • First order is limited only to in-person courtroom proceedings
    • Out-of-court activities in civil cases should be evaluated on a case-by-case basis

Order [Exception], March 16, 2020

[https://www.alabar.org/assets/2020/03/cjadministrativeorder.31620.pdf]

  • Adding exceptions to the suspension of in-person proceedings to include
    • termination-of-parental rights proceedings
    • proceedings necessary to protect constitutional rights of allegedly delinquent children (i.e. 72-hour detention and shelter-care hearings)

 

Orders No. 3 & No. 4, March 17, 2020

[https://www.alabar.org/assets/2020/03/Administrative-Order-No.-3.pdf]

  • Extending deadlines for documents or filings for one week until March 23, 2020

[https://www.alabar.org/assets/2020/03/Administrative-Order-No.-4.pdf]

  • Suspending the requirement for filing hard copies of pleadings for a period of 30 days

Order, April 2, 2020

[https://www.alabar.org/assets/2020/04/AlaSupCt-Administrative-Order-No.-5-SIGNED.pdf]

  • State of Emergency and orders of the court extended until April 30, 2020

 

Alaska Supreme Court

[https://courts.alaska.gov/covid19/]

Order, March 15, 2020

[https://public.courts.alaska.gov/web/covid19/docs/socj-2020-8130.pdf]

  • Courts ordered to stop beginning new jury trials statewide March 16

Order, March 19, 2020

[https://public.courts.alaska.gov/web/covid19/docs/sco1957.pdf]

  • Relaxing court rules allowing participation by telephone or videoconference, judges should liberally allow telephone or videoconference
    • In criminal proceedings, a judge may allow a party to appear through the party’s attorney except for evidentiary hearings and trials
  • Judges should liberally allow continuances and extensions
  • High priority cases in which judges must hold hearings:
    • isolation and quarantine cases; arraignments; domestic violence, stalking and sexual assault protective order cases; mental commitment proceedings; bail hearings; emergency restraining orders; search warrants; emergency and time-sensitive motions and hearings in child in need of aid cases; emergency and time-sensitive guardianship matters; medical permission matters; and vital records matters.

Order, March 19, 2020

[https://public.courts.alaska.gov/web/covid19/docs/socj-2020-8131.pdf]

  • Ordering suspension of all superior and district court proceedings through April 3 except high priority cases from previous order and
    • felony first appearances
    • change of plea and sentencing hearings
    • adjudication on petitions to revoke probation
    • habeas corpus applications
    • juvenile delinquency proceedings
  • Extending suspension of any new jury trials in criminal and civil cases through April 3, including grand jury proceedings

Temporary Bail Schedule, March 27, 2020

[https://public.courts.alaska.gov/web/covid19/docs/statewide-ao-bail.pdf]

  • Applies to all arrests made after the effective date of this order and until it is revoked, and all outstanding and unserved arrest warrants
    • The bail amount in outstanding and unserved arrest warrants are modified to own recognizance release for the charges governed by the bail schedule
  • A defendant charged with a misdemeanor offense, other than stalking in the 2nd degree or a crime involving domestic violence, shall be released on his/her own recognizance so long as he/she
    • obeys all court orders and federal, state, and local laws,
    • appears in court when ordered,
    • maintains contact with lawyer (if represented)
    • notifies prosecuting authority and court (and lawyer, if represented) not more than 24 hours after a change in residence
    • does not contact, directly or indirectly, any alleged victim
    • does not consume or possess alcohol (if the defendant at the time of arrest was under the influence of alcohol)
  • The arresting officer or correctional officer may apply to a judicial officer to have an alternative bail set for any offense that comes within the scope of this bail schedule

Order, April 20, 2020

[https://public.courts.alaska.gov/web/covid19/docs/socj-2020-8135.pdf]

  • Requiring clerk’s offices statewide to accept pleadings, motions, and other papers filed by email or fax in all case types except complaints in small claims cases and will deposits.

  

Arizona Supreme Court

[https://www.azcourts.gov/covid19/]

Order, March 18, 2020

[http://www.azcourts.gov/Portals/22/admorder/Orders20/2020-48.pdf]

  • All in-person proceedings in all Arizona appellate, superior, justice and municipal courts and before the presiding disciplinary judge should be avoided to the greatest extent possible consistent with core constitutional rights until further order
  • Empaneling of new petit juries scheduled for March 18 through April17 should be rescheduled
  • “The presiding superior court judge of each county shall determine how any in-person court proceedings are to be conducted in each of the county’s court rooms, under conditions that protect the health and safety of all participants…”
    • Further authorized to adopt or suspend any local rules and orders needed to address the current public health emergency
  • “any court rule that impedes a judge’s or court clerk’s ability to use available technologies to eliminate or limit in-person contact in the conduct of court business is suspended through April 17, 2020, except such suspension is subject to constitutional requirements.”
  • The period March 18, 2020 through April 17, 2020 is excluded from calculation of time for speedy trial purposes
    • This period is not excluded from calculation of time for all proceedings for persons held in-custody, including initial appearances, arraignments, preliminary hearings, in-custody probation violation, and conditions of release.

Order, April 6, 2020

[http://www.azcourts.gov/Portals/22/admorder/Orders20/2020-60.pdf]

  • All in-person proceedings still avoided to greatest extent possible
    • Presiding superior court judge of each county shall determine how any in-person court proceedings are to be conducted, mindful of social distancing requirements
    • Continuances should be liberally granted to anyone who is at a high risk of illness from COVID-19
  • Suspending empaneling of new petit juries through May 1, 2020
  • The presiding superior court judge of each county is authorized to adopt or suspend any local rules and orders needed to address the current public health emergency in cooperation with public health officials
  • The time for conducting Preliminary Hearings for in-custody defendants and Probation Revocation arraignments under Arizona law is extended to 20 days from an initial appearance that occurs through May 1, 2020

Order, April 24, 2020

[http://www.azcourts.gov/Portals/22/admorder/Orders20/2020-70.pdf]

  • Empaneling of new petit juries through June 1, 2020 should be rescheduled
  • “any court rule that impedes a judge’s or court clerk’s ability to use available technologies to eliminate or limit in-person contact in the conduct of court business is suspended through June 1, 2020”
  • The period March 18, 2020 through June 1, 2020 is excluded from calculation of time for speedy trial purposes

Arkansas Supreme Court

[https://www.arcourts.gov/arkansas-supreme-court-statement-novel-coronavirus-outbreak-and-courts]

 

Order, March 17, 2020

[https://www.arcourts.gov/sites/default/files/articles/COVID-19-PC.pdf]

  • Standard in-person suspension order through April 3, 2020
  • The Administrative Judge of each judicial circuit is authorized to determine the manner in which in-person exceptions are to be implemented
    • Any civil proceedings conducted in person shall limit the people present (only those necessary to the proceedings)
    • In criminal proceedings, the judge shall “continue to protect the defendant’s right to public trial”
  • Jury summonses are suspended until May 1, 2020
  • Oral arguments before the Arkansas Supreme Court and Arkansas Court of Appeals are canceled
  • For criminal trials, any delay for speedy-trial purposes during this time shall be deemed to presumptively constitute good cause under Arkansas Rule of Criminal Procedure 28.3(h)
  • The order does not affect
    • a court’s ability to consider or rule on any matter that does not require an in-person court proceeding
    • any required filing deadlines

Order, March 20, 2020

[https://www.arcourts.gov/sites/default/files/articles/COVID-19-PC-march-20.pdf]

  • The Justice Building in Little Rock is closed to the public and remains closed until further notice
    • the Office of the Clerk of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals shall remain open

Order, April 3, 2020

[https://www.arcourts.gov/sites/default/files/articles/COVID-19-PC-april-3.pdf]

  • Extending suspension of in-person proceedings to May 1, 2020
  • In-person exceptions listed in March 17 order are still in place
  • For the duration of the Order, judges may exercise their discretion to conduct proceedings that do not require in-person appearances or in-person proceedings suspended as a result of this Order, by teleconferencing, video conferencing, or other available technology
    • Any criminal or civil court rules that would impede a court clerk’s or judge’s ability to use such technologies are hereby suspended
  • Summonses for jury panels are suspended through June 30, 2020

Order, April 23, 2020

[https://www.arcourts.gov/sites/default/files/articles/COVID-19-PC-april-23.pdf]

  • Previous suspension of all in-person proceedings shall be extended through May 15, 2020 and all previously announced suspension and extensions from the court’s earlier responses to the COVID-19 pandemic remain in effect until further notice
  • The excepted proceedings listed in the March 17 Order should continue to be held but only occur in-person if holding the proceeding remotely is not possible or feasible. If emergency proceedings must be held in-person, the court should ensure that
    • no more than 10 persons are gathered in the courtroom or in areas around the courtroom;
    • participants wear face coverings where possible; and
    • participants in the courtroom are separated consistent with social-distancing guidelines and other precautions
  • Non-emergency proceedings should not be held in-person, and most proceedings can be conducted remotely
    • “There are no limitations on those remote proceedings so long as reasonable notice and access is provided to the participants and the public.”

California Supreme Court

[https://newsroom.courts.ca.gov/coronavirus-updates]

Order, March 30, 2020

[https://newsroom.courts.ca.gov/internal_redirect/cms.ipressroom.com.s3.amazonaws.com/262/files/20202/Statewide%20Order%20by%20the%20Chief%20Justice-Chair%20of%20the%20Judicial%20Council%203-30-2020.pdf]

 

  • March 20- advisory order issued, recommending steps the superior courts could take to mitigate the effect of reduced staffing and court closures including
    • revising on an emergency basis the countywide bail schedule and
    • prioritizing arraignments and preliminary hearings for in-custody defendants, the issuance of restraining orders, and juvenile dependency detention hearings
  • March 23- order issued
    • requiring superior courts to suspend jury trials for 60 days, unless they were able conduct such a trial at an earlier date, upon a finding of good cause shown or through the use of remote technology;
    • extending statutory deadlines for holding last day trials in criminal and civil proceedings; and
    • authorizing courts to adopt any proposed local rules or rule amendment intended to address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic to take effect immediately, without advance circulation for public comment

 

  • Superior courts are authorized to extend many time periods provided by California penal code including for
    • the holding of a preliminary examination and the defendants right to release (ext. to not more than 30 court days)
    • time in which a defendant charged with a felony offense must be taken before a magistrate (ext. to not more than seven days)
    • for the holding of a criminal trial (ext. to not more than 60 days from when statutory deadline would otherwise expire)
    • for the time provided to bring an action to trial under the Code of Civil Procedure
  • Orders a 60-day continuance of jury trials
  • Suspending any rule in the California Rules of Court to the extent such rule would prevent a court from using technology to conduct judicial proceedings and court operations remotely

Emergency Rules, April 6, 2020

[https://jcc.legistar.com/View.ashx?M=F&ID=8234474&GUID=79611543-6A40-465C-8B8B-D324F5CAE349]

  • Implementing new emergency court rules to remain in effect until 90 days after the Governor of California declares that the state of emergency is lifted
  • Rule 1. Limits the issuance of summons, entry of default, and default judgment for restitution in complaints for unlawful detainer unless the action is found to be necessary to protect public health and safety
  • Rule 2. Judicial foreclosures on a mortgage or deed are stayed, and the court may take no action unless that action is deemed necessary to further the public health and safety
  • Rule 3. Allowing courts to require that judicial proceedings and court operations be conducted remotely. In criminal proceedings, courts must receive the consent of the defendant to conduct the proceeding remotely.
  • Rule 4. Establishes a statewide emergency bail schedule, applicable to every accused person arrested and in pretrial custody. Bail for all misdemeanor and felony offenses, as well as violations of misdemeanor probation, must be set at $0 with the exception of certain offenses enumerated in the rule.
    • Courts are still able to deny bail under Art. I, § 12 or 28(f)(3) of the California Constitution
  • Rule 5. With consent of the defendant, courts must allow a defendant to waive his or her personal appearance and appear remotely or permit counsel to appear on his or her behalf when certain circumstances are met.
  • Rule 6. Prioritizing as “essential hearings and orders” various juvenile dependency proceedings like protective custody warrants
  • Rule 7. Juvenile delinquency proceedings for a child who is in custody under the Welfare and Institutions Code must be held in a timely manner to ensure that no child is detained who does not need to be detained to protect the child or the community.
  • Rule 8. Orders set to expire during the state of emergency shall be extended according to the type of order
    • Any emergency protective order must remain in effect for up to 30 days from issuance
    • Any temporary restraining order must be continued for up to 90 days
    • Any criminal protective order must be automatically extended for a period of 90 days (or until the matter can be heard)
    • Any restraining order or protective order must be automatically extended for up to 90 days
  • Rule 9. Tolling the statutes of limitations for civil causes of action
  • Rule 10. Extending the time in which to bring a civil action to trial
  • Rule 11. Providing for depositions through remote electronic means

Amended Emergency Rules, April 17, 2020

[https://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/appendix-i.pdf]

  • Adding emergency rules
  • Rule 12. Requiring a party represented by counsel, who has appeared in an action or proceeding, to accept electronic service of a notice or document
    • Electronic service on a self-represented party is permitted only with consent of that party, confirmed in writing
  • Rule 13. Revising the effective date for requests to modify support

Colorado Supreme Court

[https://www.courts.state.co.us/announcements/COVID-19.cfm]

Order, March 16, 2020

[https://www.courts.state.co.us/userfiles/file/Media/Opinion_Docs/COVID-19%20Order%2016Mar2020(1).pdf]

  • Ordering suspension of all jury calls in state courts, with the exception of jury calls for criminal trials facing imminent speedy trial deadlines
  • The following classes of matters or operations may not be suspended and will continue in the state courts throughout this period
    • Temporary civil protection orders and permanent protection order hearings
    • Temporary emergency risk protection orders
    • Advisement for incarcerated person and initial setting of bail
    • Revocation hearings on complaints to revoke probation
    • Proceedings necessary to protect the constitutional rights of criminal defendants including bond-related matters and plea agreements for incarcerated individuals
    • Detention hearings for juvenile delinquency cases
    • Other juvenile proceedings (e.g. shelter hearings in dependency and neglect cases)
    • Petitions for appointment of an emergency guardian and/or special conservator
    • Emergency mental health proceedings
  • Proceedings neither designated as essential nor prohibited are up to the discretion of the Chief Judges of the various districts

Order, March 20, 2020

[https://www.courts.state.co.us/userfiles/file/Media/SC%20-%20Cases%20of%20Interest/Order%20Extending%20Prohibition%20on%20Jury%20Calls.pdf]

  • Extending prohibition on jury calls through May 15, 2020.
  • Other provisions of March 16 order remain in effect indefinitely.

Order, April 16, 2020

[https://www.courts.state.co.us/userfiles/file/Media/COVID/4_16_20%20Chief%20Justice%20Order%20Regarding%20Court%20Operations.pdf]

  • Extending the prior Orders from March 16 and March 27 to June 1, 2020.

 

Connecticut Supreme Court

[https://jud.ct.gov/COVID19.htm]

Note: The judicial webpage has a running list of notices related to COVID-19 and court proceedings, but individual judicial orders were not available. All of the following updates were taken from the webpage above.

 

March 12, 2020

  • “Under the terms and provisions of the Judicial Branch’s Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP), the courts will schedule and hear only those matters identified as ‘Priority 1 Business Functions’ until further notice.”

 

  • “With the exception of jury trials currently in progress and criminal jury trials necessitated by the filing and granting of speedy trial motions, all jury trials, civil and criminal are suspended until further notice.”

 

 

March 18, 2020

  • Reducing the number of courts open to handle the allowed Priority 1 functions to one court building in each of the 13 Judicial Districts

 

March 19, 2020

  • Connecticut Supreme Court oral arguments scheduled to have been heard between March 24-April 2, 2020 are postponed

 

  • Immediate stay of all issued executions on evictions and ejectments through May 1, 2020
    • All foreclosure sales previously scheduled to have occurred in March and April and May are rescheduled to Saturday, June 6, 2020.

 

March 26, 2020

  • The Appellate Court will not hear arguments during its April term
    • With the agreement of all counsel of record, fully briefed cases may be submitted for disposition without oral argument.

 

  • Courthouse entrance is limited to individuals who are filing or have a hearing for a Temporary Restraining Order, Civil Protection Order, or an emergency Ex Parte motion for custody or for individuals involved in a criminal arraignment or other criminal proceedings.

 

April 1, 2020

  • Closure of Adult Probation offices to public access, including to probation clients, unless authorized by a probation officer, until further notice.

 

April 13, 2020

  • Suspending jury service until further notice

 

April 14, 2020

  • Expanding the categories of cases able to be hear by the Supreme and Appellate courts
    • “We will concentrate initially on civil and family cases… We anticipate that our judges and clerks will have the ability to act on various matters, including, but not limited to: completing and issuing decisions in cases that were previously argued or submitted and processing other matters on the papers filed rather than requiring parties to appear in court… Regarding family matters, we have identified two areas that may be addressed remotely: 1) Approval of joint petitions for non-adversarial divorce; and 2) entering court orders regarding requests for approval of temporary agreements, without a court appearance.”

 

  • The Supreme and Appellate courts will also begin to schedule remote oral arguments

 

April 15, 2020

  • The six operating Superior Courts are now accepting non-priority 1 civil and family filings

 

Order, April 23, 2020

[https://jud.ct.gov/HomePDFs/execution_61.pdf]

[https://jud.ct.gov/HomePDFs/Foreclosure_extended.pdf]

  • Ordering an immediate stay of the service of all issued executions on evictions and ejectments through June 1, 2020
  • All foreclosure sales scheduled for June through July 18, 2020 are canceled and reset for July 25, 2020

 

Note: All orders below are executive orders from the Governor, Ned Lamont. These orders address many different industries and are not specific to the criminal justice system.

 

Executive Order No. 7G, March 19, 2020

[https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/Office-of-the-Governor/Executive-Orders/Lamont-Executive-Orders/Executive-Order-No-7G.pdf?la=en]

  • Suspending non-critical court operations and associated requirements “for the duration of this public health and civil preparedness emergency, unless earlier modified or terminated by [the governor]” including suspension of all statutory
    • location or venue requirements
    • time requirements, statutes of limitation, or other limitations or deadlines relating to service of process, court proceedings or court filings
    • all time requirements or deadlines for courts to issue notices, hold court, hear matters and/or render decisions with respect to an enumerated list of proceedings and state statutes.

 

Executive Order No. 7K, March 23, 2020

[https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/Office-of-the-Governor/Executive-Orders/Lamont-Executive-Orders/Executive-Order-No-7K.pdf?la=en]

  • Suspending non-critical probate court operations and associated requirements, including
    • reporting and filing requirements
    • Probate Court facility, location or venue requirements,
    • time requirements, statutes of limitation, or other limitations or deadlines relating to service of process, court proceedings or court filings
    • all time requirements, statutes of limitation, or other limitations or deadlines relating to issuing notices, holding court, hearing matters and/or rendering decisions

 

 

Delaware Supreme Court

[https://courts.delaware.gov/aoc/covid-19]

 

Order, March 13, 2020

[https://courts.delaware.gov/forms/download.aspx?id=120328]

  • Declaring a judicial emergency effective March 16 and continuing for 30 days (subsequently extended)
    • Trial courts in the State shall have the discretion to continue trials and hearings in civil and criminal cases for a period of 30 days in order to limit the number of people gathering in public court buildings
    • “[T]rial courts in the State are authorized and encouraged to utilize audiovisual devices to conduct proceedings (except for jury trials).”
    • All time requirements under the Speedy Trial Guidelines are tolled

 

Order, March 16, 2020

[https://courts.delaware.gov/rules/pdf/March162020COVIDPaperFilingsSuspended.pdf]

  • Suspending filing of paper copies with the Supreme Court and lawyers “shall not submit paper copies of any documents that have been electronically filed with the Court.”

 

Announcement, March 18, 2020

[https://courts.delaware.gov/forms/download.aspx?id=120398]

  • The Court will decide all March–May appeals without argument unless a motion is filed no later than March 27, 2020 requesting oral argument and stating concisely why oral argument is required, and the position of opposing counsel.
    • If the motion is granted, the Court will reschedule oral argument

 

Administrative Order No. 3, March 22, 2020

[https://courts.delaware.gov/forms/download.aspx?id=120578]

  • All courthouses and administrative offices are closed to the public beginning March 23, with access restricted to identified personnel and emergency/essential hearings and operations

 

  • Each courthouse shall provide a method, such as a dropbox or mailing address, for attorneys and the public to fill out and file paper documents if electronic filing is not available to them.

 

  • Non-emergency/essential arguments or hearings over telephone or videoconference shall proceed at the discretion of each of the State courts.

 

  • Deadlines in court rules or state or local statutes and ordinances applicable to the judiciary and statutes of limitations that expire between March 23, 2020 and April 15, 2020 are extended through April 21, 2020
    • This does not affect deadlines, statutes of limitations, and statutes or repose that do not expire before April 15.

 

Administrative Order No. 4, April 14, 2020

[https://courts.delaware.gov/rules/pdf/COVID-extended-deadline.pdf]

  • Extending the judicial emergency through May 14, 2020; the provisions of previous orders are extended through this time

 

  • The time periods for bringing an arrested person before a magistrate, for bringing a prisoner before a judge are extended not than more than 7 days.

 

  • The time for taking a juvenile charged with a delinquent act before a court is extended not more than 2 days.

 

Justice of the Peace Court, Standing Order No 3., April 23, 2020

[https://courts.delaware.gov/rules/pdf/JPCourt-StandingOrderNo3-ConcerningCOVID-19.pdf]

  • All criminal proceedings scheduled for in-court appearance from March 17, 2020 through May 14, 2020 shall be rescheduled for a date no earlier than June 1, 2020 except
    • “All forthwith criminal proceedings shall continue and be conducted by videophone unless the police or other detaining agency requests an in-person proceeding…”
    • The periods for bringing an arrested person before a magistrate and a prisoner before a judge are extended not more than 7 days. The time for taking a juvenile charged with a delinquent act before a court is extended not more than 2 days.

 

  • All proceedings involving individuals in custody for the scheduled proceedings, and emergency reviews of bail shall proceed as scheduled and be conducted by videophone

 

  • The Court will continue to issue rulings on criminal motions that do not require in-person appearance by the parties

 

  • All landlord/tenant, debt, replevin and trespass proceedings scheduled for in-court appearance and all evictions currently ordered and scheduled from March 17 through May 14, 2020 shall be rescheduled for a date not earlier than June 1, 2020, with the following exceptions:
    • Summons applications in landlord-tenant matters involving essential services and/or harm to person or property will be accepted and ruled upon;
    • Case by case exceptions

 

  • All other non-emergency and non-essential hearings currently scheduled are postponed until a date no earlier than June 1, 2020

 

  • All Justice of the Peace Court locations will be closed to the public except 24 hour court operations at specific courts
    • members of the public will also be admitted to Justice of the Peace Court locations for the purposes of participating in an emergency or essential hearing or to post bail.

 

 

District of Columbia Court of Appeals

[https://www.dccourts.gov/coronavirus]

 

Order Establishing Procedures for Emergency Motions for Release, March 22, 2020

[https://www.dccourts.gov/sites/default/files/Order-Attachment-PDFs/Standing-order-amended.pdf]

  • Setting forth requirements that must be complied with for any motion seeking relief from detention based on the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

  • Motions must provide information on defendant including
    • whether the defendant has a documented health condition that puts them especially at risk with respect to COVID-19
    • how old is the defendant?
    • whether the detention is pretrial or post-conviction
    • whether the defendant is charged with only non-assaultive misdemeanors
    • whether the defendant is charged with only non-violent felonies
    • Whether the defendant is being detained post-conviction and pending sentencing
      • Must specify the earliest date the defendant could be released in compliance with the voluntary sentencing guidelines and mandatory minimum sentencing requirements
    • What is the opposing party’s position on the motion

 

  • Motions for release based on the COVID-19 Pandemic filed after issuance of this order that are not in strict compliance with the requirements of this order will be denied without prejudice

 

 

Order, March 23, 2020

[https://www.dccourts.gov/sites/default/files/2020-03/DCCA_ORDER–COVID_19.pdf]

  • Oral arguments are cancelled through May 31, 2020
    • the court will decide the matter without oral arguments unless the court determines that oral argument is necessary

 

  • DC Court of Appeals historic courthouse building will be closed to the public, with only judges and court staff allowed access

 

  • All filing deadlines for all cases are suspended/tolled/extended until May 31, 2020
    • Emergency filings may be submitted by email
    • New filings are still accepted; however, e-filing is strongly encouraged.
    • Pro-se parties who are not currently registered for e-filing may email filings, or if unable to email, they may hand-deliver filings

 

  • The court will continue to consider and decide cases in which it would not normally grant oral argument, based on the parties’ briefs and motions for summary disposition.

 

Order Suspending Service of Weekends in Jail, March 27, 2020

[https://www.dccourts.gov/sites/default/files/Order-Attachment-PDFs/Order-suspending-weekends-in-jail-3-27-20.pdf]

  • All weekend in jail provisions of sentences in criminal cases are suspended until June 5, 2020
    • then weekends shall resume and be served until completion of the originally imposed number of weekends in jail are completed

 

Order Suspending Execution of Bench Warrants, March 27, 2020

[https://www.dccourts.gov/sites/default/files/Order-Attachment-PDFs/Order-suspending-execution-of-some-bench-warrants-3-27-2020.pdf]

  • Recognizes that arresting a person wanted on most misdemeanor bench warrants during the public health emergency presents a health risk to the person, law enforcement, and others which outweighs the interest of the public in speedy resolution of the cases

 

  • All misdemeanor bench warrants issued in cases with designations CMD (Criminal Misdemeanor), CTF (Criminal Traffic), and CDC (District of Columbia Criminal), are hereby suspended
    • except for bench warrants issued in misdemeanor sex offense (any age victim) and indecent exposure cases

 

  • Temporary suspension of misdemeanor bench warrants does not
    • prevent a party from filing a motion in the case or surrendering on the bench warrant
    • limit the government from charging a defendant with a violation of the Bail Reform Act (BRA) in the appropriate circumstances

 

  • The order shall not cause a bench warrant to be quashed or removed from any case, but the judge may (upon motion or a party or sua sponte) order that a specific bench warrant be executed or quashed

 

  • Effective until May 15, 2020

 

Order Concerning Criminal Cases, April 1, 2020

[https://www.dccourts.gov/sites/default/files/matters-docs/General%20Order%20pdf/addendum-to-general-order-re-pandemic-3-30-20.pdf]

  • Issued by the Presiding Judges of the Criminal and Domestic Violence Divisions

 

  • Clarifying the status of expiration dates for Deferred prosecution agreements (DPAs) and Deferred sentencing agreements (DSAs) as well as probationary terms in matters pending in the Criminal and Domestic Violence Divisions

 

  • DPAs and DSAs will not expire during the tolling period and hearings originally scheduled to occur during this time period will be re-scheduled upon the resumption of normal court operations, consistent with the scheduling order previously issue
    • USAO or Office of the AG may still dismiss a case in this time period upon a defendant’s successful completion of the terms of the DPA or DSA
    • Defendants may file motions in this time period requesting termination on an earlier date upon showing fulfillment of all conditions

 

  • Probationary sentences will terminate on the original end date, unless an Alleged Violation Report (AVR) is filed prior to the probation end date

 

 

 

Florida Supreme Court

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/Emergency]

 

Administrative Order, March 11, 2020

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/content/download/631290/7174884/AOSC20-12.pdf]

  • Ordering all chief judges of district and circuit courts to review emergency preparedness plans, consistent with measures to mitigate impact of COVID-19

 

  • “All chief judges of the district and circuit courts are authorized to expend state funds to purchase emergency preparedness supplies to provide increased protection for State Courts System officers, employees, and the public.”

 

Administrative Order, March 13, 2020

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/content/download/631744/7178881/AOSC20-13.pdf]

  • “All grand jury proceedings, jury selection proceedings, and criminal and civil jury trials are suspended during the period beginning Monday, March 16, 2020, through Friday, March 27, 2020, or as provided by subsequent order.”
    • A proceeding that has been commenced may proceed if the presiding judge, with approval of the chief judge, determines that competition of the proceeding without delay is required by the interests of justice.

 

  • All time periods involving speedy trial procedures in criminal and juvenile court proceedings are suspended until the close of business March 30, 2020

 

  • All rules of procedure, court orders, and opinions that limit or prohibit conducting proceedings by remote electronic means are suspended from the until the close of business on March 27, 2020.
    • Mindful of the requirements of the confrontation clause

 

Administrative Order, March 17, 2020

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/content/download/631996/7181425/AOSC20-15.pdf]

  • Requiring circuit and county courts to “continue to perform essential court proceedings” which aligns with the proceedings classified as essential in the Standard in-person suspension order
    • Nothing in the order limits the ability of chief judges to determine that additional proceedings are essential or critical to the state of emergency or the public health emergency
    • “no proceedings or other court events other than essential proceedings and proceedings critical to the state of emergency or the public health emergency shall be conducted through in-person hearings until such time as the public health emergency is resolved, or as provided by subsequent order.”

 

  • Order is effective until the close of business on March 27, 2020

 

Administrative Order, March 24, 2020

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/content/download/632431/7186205/AOSC20-17.pdf]

  • Combining and extending the measures implemented in the previous administrative orders
    • “all grand jury proceedings, jury selection proceedings, and criminal and civil jury trials are further suspended through Friday, April 17, 2020, or as provided by subsequent order.”
      • Maintains discretion to continue a proceeding that has already commenced if in the interests of justice

 

  • “all time periods involving the speedy trial procedure, in criminal and juvenile court proceedings, are further suspended through the close of business on Monday, April 20, 2020 or as provided by subsequent order.”
    • Specific suspension of time periods for persons arrested for first degree murder through the close of business on April 17, 2020

 

  • Extending suspension of in-person proceedings to only those deemed essential/critical through the close of business on April 17, 2020

 

  • Authorizing chief justices to conduct pretrial release and first appearance hearings, as well as pleas, in the county of arrest rather than requiring transport of the defendant to the county where the warrant originated
    • Aimed to “mitigate the health risks associated with the incarceration and transportation of defendants during the pandemic”
    • chief judges are directed to ensure that the due process rights of the defendant are protected by facilitating the temporary transfer of the case to the holding court, if necessary

 

Order, March 30, 2020

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/content/download/632898/7191093/AOSC20-19.pdf]

  • Suspending all time periods involving the speedy trial procedure in noncriminal traffic infraction court proceedings until the close of business April 20, 2020

 

 

Order, April 6, 2020 (Comprehensive COVID-19 Emergency Measures for the Florida State Courts)

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/content/download/633282/7195631/AOSC20-23.pdf]

  • Order shall remain in effect until the close of business on May 29, 2020 unless a different end date is indicated in the order

 

  • All rules of procedure, court orders, and opinions that limit or prohibit proceedings by remote electronic means remain suspended

 

  • Jury Proceedings and Jury Trials. All grand jury proceedings, jury selection proceedings, and criminal and civil jury trials shall remain suspended.
    • In-person proceedings suspended except for the essential proceedings as provided in March 17 Order
    • Requires each chief judge to review cases and court events, and issue directives to the judges of the respective circuit and county court to reschedule, postpone, or cancel all non-essential and non-critical court proceedings and events unless the chief judge determines that such other specific proceedings or events can be effectively conducted remotely.

 

  • Speedy trial time periods (for criminal, juvenile, and noncriminal traffic infraction proceedings) remain suspended through the close of business on June 1, 2020

 

Notice, April 14, 2020

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/content/download/633679/7200075/04-14-2020-May-OAs-Using-Zoom.pdf]

  • Florida Supreme Court to hold May oral arguments using remote teleconferencing including cases on medical and recreational marijuana

 

Administrative Order, April 21, 2020

[https://www.floridasupremecourt.org/content/download/634099/7204903/AOSC20-28.pdf]

  • Establishing a Workgroup on the Continuity of Court Operations and Proceedings During and After COVID-19
    • Created to develop findings and recommendations for the phases of the pandemic, including recommending the priority in which proceedings requiring in-person hearings and trials should resume

 

 

 

Georgia Supreme Court

[https://www.gasupreme.us/court-information/court_corona_info/]

 

Order Declaring Statewide Judicial Emergency, March 14, 2020

[https://www.gasupreme.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/CJ-Melton-amended-Statewide-Jud-Emergency-order.pdf]

  • Declaring a statewide judicial emergency until April 13, 2020 unless otherwise extended

 

  • Courts should remain open to address essential functions, prioritizing matters “necessary to protect health, safety, and liberty of individuals.” Further defines matters which should be considered essential as:
    • where an immediate liberty or safety concern is present requiring the attention of the court as soon as the court is available;
    • criminal court search warrants, arrest warrants, initial appearances, and bond reviews;
    • domestic abuse temporary protective orders and restraining orders;
    • juvenile court delinquency detention hearings and emergency removal matters; and
    • mental health commitment hearings.

 

  • Trials in any criminal case for which a jury has been empaneled and the trial has commenced as of the date of this order shall continue to conclusion, unless good cause exists to suspend the trial or declare a mistrial.

 

  • Suspending, tolling, extending, or otherwise granting relief from any deadlines/schedules/filing requirements imposed by otherwise applicable statutes, rules, regulations, or court orders, whether in civil or criminal cases or administrative matters

 

Order, In Re: Superior Court Rules, March 27, 2020

[https://www.gasupreme.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Superior_Court_COVID19_Order.pdf]

  • Allowing for the use of video conferences to the same extent telephone conferences are allowed, but notice must be given to the public that the proceeding will occur wholly by remote video conference
    • If the right of open court applies, the court shall give the public the opportunity to view the remote video conference through a livestream, joining the video conference (view only) or substantially similar means

 

Note: substantially the same order was issued on March 30 and March 31, 2020 for Municipal, Magistrate, Juvenile, and Probate courts

[https://www.gasupreme.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Municipal_Court_video_conference_order_entered.pdf]

 

[https://www.gasupreme.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Magistrate_Court_video_conference_Order_entered.pdf]

 

[https://www.gasupreme.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Juvenile_Court_COVID-19_Order_entered.pdf]

 

[https://www.gasupreme.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Probate_Court_COVID-19_Order_entered.pdf]

 

 

Hawaii Supreme Court

[https://www.courts.state.hi.us/covid-19-information-page]

 

Order, March 16, 2020

[https://www.courts.state.hi.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/031619_scmf-20-152_In_Re_COVID-19.pdf]

  • Except emergency and time-sensitive matters, in-person appearances for civil, family, and, to the extent possible, criminal dockets will be limited starting March 17, 2020 until April 30, 2020
    • Chief judges of each circuit “shall devise a circuit-specific plan to significantly reduce the need for in-court appearances”
    • This postponement does not apply to proceedings on petitions for temporary restraining orders “and other proceedings that the presiding judge deems urgent.”

 

  • All on-going trials will be postponed until after April 30, 2020
    • This includes, to the extent reasonably possible, criminal trials, grand jury proceedings, and hearings
    • This postponement does not apply to initial appearances in felony cases, preliminary hearings for in-custody defendants in felony cases, arraignment and plea hearings

 

  • Courts have the discretion to convert hearing motions to non-hearing motions or allow motions to be argued remotely

 

  • Specialty courts (e.g. Drug Court, Mental Health Court, Veterans Treatment Court, etc.) should take steps to stagger the participants’ appearances and minimize the number of people gathered in court at one time

 

 

Order Extending Deadlines in the Circuit, March 20, 2020

[https://www.courts.state.hi.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/032019_scmf-20-152_In_Re_COVID-19-deadline-extension.pdf]

  • All deadlines, time schedules, and filing requirements imposed by statutes, rules, or court orders that expire between March 23 through April 2, 3030 are extended to April 6, 2020

 

Order Directing Courthouse Closures, March 20, 2020

[https://www.courts.state.hi.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/scmf-20-152-In-re-COVID-19-ORD-03-20-20.pdf]

  • All judiciary facilities, including courthouses, are closed to the public beginning March 23, 2020 through April 30, 2020. Only individuals with official court business may enter.
    • Any person who enters a judiciary facility for court business must minimize their time within the facility to the extent reasonably possible
    • All other provisions of the March 16 Order remain in effect

 

Order Regarding Trials, April 17, 2020

[https://www.courts.state.hi.us/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/041720-720am_scmf-20-152_InReCOVID-19_ORD-trials.pdf]

  • All trials in civil, criminal, and family courts shall be postponed to a date after May 29, 2020, or to a date after the termination of the state of emergency, whichever is sooner
    • All other provisions of the March 16 Order remain in effect

 

Notice, April 24, 2020

[https://www.courts.state.hi.us/news_and_reports/2020/04/hawaii-supreme-court-to-hold-oral-argument-remotely]

  • The Hawaii Supreme Court will use video conferencing to conduct its May 5 oral argument
    • “Until the COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed, future oral arguments are expected to be held in this manner.”

 

 

 

Idaho Supreme Court

[https://isc.idaho.gov/Emergency%20Orders]

 

Order, March 13, 2020

[https://isc.idaho.gov/files/COVID-19-Order.pdf]

  • All in-person appearances for civil and criminal dockets shall be excused except emergency matters, child protection hearings, domestic violence hearings, and evidentiary hearings in criminal cases.
    • Judges are encouraged to use remote technology for all necessary hearings
    • “Reasonable attempts should be made to reschedule all criminal trials, subject to a defendant’s right to a speedy trial”
    • For in-person proceedings, individuals present limited to parties, attorneys, necessary witnesses, jurors, and victims. Media may be allowed at the presiding judge’s discretion

 

  • All civil trials, hearings, and motions should be postponed and rescheduled for a later date unless the judge finds the proceedings can be held and adequately recorded through telephonic or video means
    • “Any civil trial or hearing currently in progress shall be continued or completed at the discretion of the presiding judge.”
    • For in-person proceedings, individuals present are limited to parties, attorneys, necessary witnesses, and jurors

 

  • “With the exception of emergency matters and hearings statutorily or by Court Rule required to be held, small claims, eviction, juvenile, probate, traffic, and guardianship cases shall be continued.”

 

  • “Unless public safety compels otherwise, Judges shall issue summonses in lieu of bench warrants or notices of failure to appear.”

 

  • “All show cause dockets for payment of fines and court costs scheduled within this timeframe shall be continued for 60 days”

 

  • “The 21-day preliminary hearing requirement for out-of-custody defendants under ICR 5.1 is waived during the effective dates of this Order.”

 

 

Order, March 23, 2020

[https://isc.idaho.gov/EO/ISC-Emergency-Order-Ammended.pdf]

  • Effective from March 25, 2020 until further Order of the Idaho Supreme Court

 

  • “No jury panels shall be called during the pendency of this Amended Order. All criminal jury trials currently scheduled to be held on March 25,2020 through April 30, 2020 shall be continued no less than thirty days from the date of the trial’s original starting date.”

 

  • Adding adoption matters to the listed exceptions for the otherwise mandatory continuance on all “small claims, eviction, juvenile, probate, contested infraction, and guardianship cases”
    • Uncontested infraction cases may proceed

 

 

Order, March 26, 2020

[https://isc.idaho.gov/EO/Emergency-Reduction-Order.pdf]

  • All State of Idaho court facilities shall conduct reduced operations through April 15, 2020, meaning that only emergency hearings will be conducted
    • Listed emergency hearings are substantially the same as those exceptions in the Standard In-person Suspension Order, with the additional exception for “eviction actions where the basis for eviction is that the unlawful delivery, production or use of a controlled substance is taking place on the premises.”

 

  • Treatment Court and Domestic Violence Court proceedings may continue at the discretion of the presiding judge to the extent that such matters can be conducted through remote means

 

  • All criminal jury trials currently scheduled to be held on March 26 through April 20, 2020 “shall be continued for a period of not less than thirty days from the date of the trial’s original starting date.”
    • Existing grand jury panels, at the discretion of the court that summoned the grand jury, may be extended until May 22, 2020

 

  • All courts will continue to accept new pleadings and filings in all cases, including non-emergency matters
    • Any deadline set by a court order or rule which falls between March 26, through April 15, 2020 is extended until April 16, 2020.

 

  • This order does not extend any deadline for a party to comply with a non-procedural order or judgment of a court
    • g. if a party has been previously ordered to produce discovery, pay child support, comply with a parenting time schedule, or transfer title to property, the party must comply with that deadline.

 

 

Order, In Re: Supreme Court May 2020 Oral Arguments April 14, 2020

[https://isc.idaho.gov/eo/Order-In-RE-May-OA.pdf]

  • All Supreme Court hearings scheduled during the month of May 2020 will be conducted via Zoom video conferencing on the date and time currently set for oral argument.

 

 

Order, In Re: Extension of Emergency Reduction in Court Services…, April 14, 2020

[https://isc.idaho.gov/eo/Emergency-Reduction-Extension-Order.pdf]

  • Extending the operative dates of the March 26th Order for an additional week, through April 22, 2020

 

  • Since calling of jury panels is prohibited until after April 22, 2020, no jury trials shall commence before June 1, 2020

 

  • Any deadlines set by a court order or rule falling between March 26, 2020 and April 22, 2020 are extended until April 23, 2020

 

Order, April 21, 2020

[https://isc.idaho.gov/EO/Order-In-Re-Eemrgency-Reduction-042120-CERTIFIED.pdf]

  • Further extending the operative dates of the March 26th Order through April 30, 2020

 

  • In the event a deadline has been set by a court order or rule and falls on or between March 26, 2020 and April 30, 2020 when courts are reducing operations, the time for filing or doing any other thing in any court shall be extended until May 1, 2020

 

  • In the event a hearing has been scheduled to occur during the effective date of this order, the date for the hearing shall be reset by the presiding judge to occur after April 30, 2020

 

Order, Emergency Reduction in Court Services and Limitation of Access to Court Facilities, April 22, 2020

[https://isc.idaho.gov/EO/CERTIFIED-042220-Emergency-Reduction-Order.pdf]

  • Establishing minimum operating personnel for each court facility

 

  • No jury trials shall commence for a criminal case and no juror shall be required to appear before August 3, 2020
    • “The postponement of criminal jury trials required by this order shall be considered among the other factors listed under Idaho Criminal Rule 46 in determining the amount of bail and for purposes of determining eligibility for pretrial release.”

 

  • No jury trials shall commence for a civil case before October 5, 2020

 

  • All trials on a petition to terminate parental rights and felony sentencing hearings in which the possible penalty includes a life sentence shall be held in person
    • All other court proceedings are presumptively to be held remotely
    • A presiding judge may, in the exercise of discretion, determine that a proceeding must be held in person because of the court’s needs or to prevent undue prejudice to a party

 

  • While in a courthouse, any person attending or participating in a court proceeding or doing court business must wear a mask covering their nose and mouth

 

  • Existing grand jury panels may be extended at the discretion of the court that summoned the grand jury

 

 

 

Illinois Supreme Court

[http://www.illinoiscourts.gov/Administrative/covid-19.asp]

 

Order, March 13, 2020

[https://courts.illinois.gov/Media/PressRel/2020/031320.pdf]

 

  • Sets restrictions on persons allowed to enter any courthouse
  • Illinois Supreme Court will livestream oral arguments on March 17th and 18th as an alternative to in-person attendance

 

Order, March 17, 2020

[https://courts.illinois.gov/SupremeCourt/Announce/2020/031720-3.pdf]

  • Essential proceedings shall continue to be heard, and if feasible and subject to constitutional limitations, they shall be heard remotely
    • All non-essential court matters and proceedings should be continued or, where possible, conducted remotely

 

  • Subject to constitutional limitations, all courts, in any civil or criminal case, may modify or suspend any deadlines and procedures for a state period ending no later than 30 days after the Governor’s state of emergency declaration has been lifted
    • All Supreme Court Rules contrary to any provisions of this order are temporarily suspended

 

Order, March 20, 2020

[https://courts.illinois.gov/SupremeCourt/Announce/2020/032020-1.pdf]

  • The Chief Judges of each circuit may continue trials for the next 60 days and until further order of the Illinois Supreme Court
    • “In the case of criminal proceedings, any delay resulting from this emergency continuance order shall not be attributable to either the state or the defendant”

 

Note: this order was reissued allowing the Chief Judges of each circuit to continue trials “until further order” of the Illinois Supreme Court on April 3, 2020 and April 7, 2020. A specific finding was made that the “continuances occasioned by this Order serve the ends of justice and outweigh the best interests of the public and defendants in a speedy trial.”

[https://courts.illinois.gov/SupremeCourt/Announce/2020/040320.pdf]

[https://courts.illinois.gov/SupremeCourt/Announce/2020/040720-1.pdf]

 

Order, March 24, 2020

[https://courts.illinois.gov/SupremeCourt/Announce/2020/032420-1.pdf]

  • Extending the deadlines to file a notice of appeal in the circuit court, appellant and appellee briefs, and a petition for rehearing.

 

  • The appellate court is directed to hold its mandates for 70 days from the appellate court judgment.
    • “To make clear, this directive applies to cases where the appellate court judgment was entered 35 days before the date of this order.”

 

Order, April 24, 2020

[https://courts.illinois.gov/SupremeCourt/Announce/2020/042420.pdf]

  • Notes that the Governor of Illinois issues Executive Order 2020-25 “suspending the service of garnishment summonses, wage deduction summonses, and citations to discover assets”

 

  • Requiring depository financial institutions that have received a garnishment summons or other citation to release to the debtor the personal property that may have been frozen, withheld, or seized.
    • This Order does not
      • “relieve a judgment debtor of any liability”
      • Apply to wage deduction proceedings
      • Apply to supplemental proceedings arising out of domestic support obligations
    • This Order shall remain in effect until the suspension pursuant to E.O. 2020-25 is no longer in effect

 

 

Indiana Supreme Court

[https://www.in.gov/judiciary/5575.htm]

 

Order, March 16, 2020

[https://www.in.gov/judiciary/files/order-other-2020-20S-CB-123.pdf]

  • Ordering “each trial court statewide to implement all relevant and necessary portions of its continuity of operations plan (COOP)”
    • Recommending trial courts consider “whether local needs” warrant adopting any of a list of enumerated emergency measures including tolling time limits, suspending or rescheduling trials, continuing non-essential hearings, etc.

 

 

Order, March 23, 2020

[https://www.in.gov/judiciary/files/order-other-2020-20S-CB-123a.pdf]

  • Declaring an emergency exits in the Indiana Supreme Court

 

  • Tolls all laws, riles, and procedures setting time limits for appellate filings through April 6, 2020
    • Further tolls all laws, rules, and procedures setting time limits for speedy trials in criminal and juvenile proceedings, public health and mental health matters, etc.
    • No interest shall be due or charged during this tolled period

 

  • Suspends the requirement of filing by personal delivery, although e-filing remains available

 

Order, April 03, 2020

[https://www.in.gov/judiciary/files/order-other-2020-20S-CB-123c.pdf]

  • All circuit, superior, and probate courts have been granted emergency relief and this order extends all relief previously granted through May 4, 2020 or the expiration of the public emergency as declared by the Governor, whichever is later

 

  • All courts that were granted the authority to continue jury trials are directed to review the need for ongoing suspension such that, if continued suspension is not necessary, the decision will allow adequate notification of the jury pool to resume jury trials no later than May 4, 2020 or three weeks after the expiration of the public emergency
    • If the courts believe continues suspension is necessary, they may individually petition this Court to extend the suspension further

 

  • “Courts are authorized to review county-jail and direct placement community correction sentences of non-violent inmates and juveniles and, after consultation with a team comprising local prosecutors, a public defender, community corrections, the county sheriff, and local health authorities, to modify sentences to probation, home detention, or order temporary release from the jail, with service of executed sentences to resume as thereafter ordered.”

 

  • Absent an emergency basis, courts shall issue no new writs of attachment, civil bench warrants or body attachments until the expiration of the public health emergency
    • Any that were issued but not yet served prior to this Order shall be stayed until the expiration of the public health emergency

 

Order, April 07, 2020

[https://www.in.gov/judiciary/files/order-other-2020-20S-CB-123d.pdf]

  • In person filing suspension is extended through May 4, 2020

 

  • All deadlines in prior orders are still in effect, however “the Courts recognize that it may not be possible for all parties to meet these deadlines because of the current public health emergency.”
    • Directs such individuals to move for an extension of time, and relief will be granted for good cause shown

 

Order, April 22, 2020

[https://www.in.gov/judiciary/files/order-other-2020-20S-CB-123e.pdf]

  • All Indiana trial courts are authorized to live-stream court proceedings on a public platform including YouTube (except those hearings that are confidential by law)
    • Such live stream shall be viewable only during the proceeding
    • Courts must use a “DO NOT RECORD” watermark on each live-streamed proceeding and “admonish ‘virtual courtroom’ participants not to record the proceedings.”

 

Order, April 24, 2020

[https://www.in.gov/judiciary/files/order-other-2020-20S-CB-123f.pdf]

  • Further extending all relief previously granted due to the ongoing public health emergency, however “it is prudent for courts to begin developing plans for gradually expanding operations as conditions permit.”
    • “The exact date on which courts will be authorized to begin this transition will be conditions-driven and follow recommendations of the Executive Branch.”
    • Guidelines for how to safely and responsibly expand operations in Indiana’s Courts will be developed by a task force convened by the Indiana Supreme Court

 

  • The effective date of all orders granting emergency relief to trial courts is extended through May 17, 2020
    • Absent further order from the Indiana Supreme Court, “trial courts should plan to begin expanding operations beginning on May 18, 2020.”

 

  • All deadlines for trial courts to resume jury trials or submit status reports are vacated, and instead courts shall coordinate with public health authorities to ensure local health conditions and facility readiness are appropriate for gradually expanding judicial proceedings
    • Courts must submit transition plans for expanded operations to the Indiana Supreme Court for the Court’s approval no later than May 15, 2020

 

  • Trial courts shall not “resume jury trials until at least June 1, 2020, without prior approval from this Court.” Courts seeking approval to hold a jury trial before this date must petition the Court showing that
    • (a) the matter is uniquely essential and warrants an earlier jury trial setting;
    • (b) local health authorities are aware of the proposed trial setting;
    • (c) local health conditions are appropriate to hold a jury trial;
    • (d) the parties have consented in writing to holding an earlier jury trial; and
    • (e) the jury trial will be held in compliance with all health and safety precautions directed by those local health authorities.

 

  • “In light of the extension granted by this order, any individual petitions to extent emergency relief beyond May 4 are, to the extent not addressed by this order, denied as moot.”

 

 

 

Iowa Supreme Court

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/iowa-courts/covid-19-information-and-updates/]

 

Order, March 12, 2020

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/static/media/cms/031220_COVID19_Order_1F51B086A3C5F.pdf

  • An attorney or party must promptly notify opposing counsel and the respective Clerk of Court’s Office if they reasonably suspect that a participant in any scheduled hearing, trial, conference, deposition, or other proceeding may have an elevated risk of transmitting coronavirus
    • No person who has an elevated risk of transmitting coronavirus may personally attend any proceeding without prior authorization from the court

 

  • Courts may conduct conferences and hearings using video or phone conferencing

 

Order, March 13, 2020

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/static/media/cms/031320_COVID_19_Ord_JCS_5D5C56E7FA424.pdf]

  • Extending the same precautions from the March 12 order to Juvenile Court
    • “Chief Juvenile Court Officers will continue to work with Chief Judges and State Court Administration on plans to develop mitigating measures to address the effects of the coronavirus/COVID-19 outbreak on juveniles and their families. All such efforts must be consistent with providing services to at-risk youth and their families to the fullest possible extent while protecting public safety by mitigating the impact of coronavirus.

 

 

Order, March 14, 2020

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/static/media/cms/Supervisory_order_of_3142020_22BCE0F4943C5.pdf]

  • Criminal Trials: All criminal trials that have not commenced as of March 13, 2020 and that are scheduled to begin before April 20, 2020 shall be continued to a date no earlier than April 20
    • In rescheduling, the court shall give first priority to those trials where speedy trial has not been waived and the defendant is in custody; second priority to trial where speedy trial has not been waive and the defendant is not in custody; and third priority to trials where speedy trial has been waived and the defendant is in custody
    • Criminal trials already in progress are not affected
    • Criminal nonjury trials scheduled to commence before April 20 may go forward as scheduled, however motions to continue shall be freely granter where the defendant moves for or consents to the continuance

 

  • Criminal Proceedings Other than Trial: Through April 20, district courts may accept written guilty pleas in felony cases
    • For sentencing hearings, any may party be allowed to appear by videoconference with that party’s consent
    • Where the defendant’s personal appearance is required other than trial and sentencing, the defendant may execute a written waiver of appearance, with the consent of the district court
    • All grand jury proceedings shall be suspended until April 20

 

  • Civil Cases: All civil jury trials and small claims trials that have not commenced as of March 13, and that are scheduled to begin before May 4 shall be continued to a deter to be determined
    • All civil nonjury trials and other civil hearings set to commence before May 4 may go forward as scheduled

 

  • Juvenile Cases: Non-delinquency juvenile matters may go forward as scheduled.
    • With the approval of the court, hearings may be conducted with parties or participants appearing remotely.

 

  • Appellate Oral Arguments: The appellate courts will not hear in-person oral arguments through May 15, 2020, but at the court’s discretion, cases currently scheduled for oral argument may be submitted nonorally or heard through videoconference of telephone conference

 

Order, March 17, 2020

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/static/media/cms/document20200318061832_CC5A01DE7085C.pdf]

  • Criminal Cases: Any criminal trial, including nonjury trials, that is not already in progress and that is scheduled to begin before April 20 shall be continued and reset to a date no earlier than April 20
    • For felony or misdemeanor sentencing hearings through April 20, district courts may allow any party to appear by videoconference or telephone with that party’s consent
    • Through April 20, magistrates and other judicial officers may conduct initial appearances and bond reviews by videoconference or telephone
    • Through April 20, district courts in their discretion may cancel any pretrial conferences
    • All traffic-related proceedings set to commence before April 17 shall be rescheduled to a date no earlier than April 20

 

  • Civil Cases: All civil nonjury trials, forcible entry and detainer proceedings, and other hearings set to commence before May 4 shall be either continued to a date no earlier than May 4 or conducted by telephone (at the discretion of the distrit court)
    • Any mediation set to occur at a courthouse location before May 4 shall be either continued to a date no earlier than May 4 or conducted by telephone

 

  • Juvenile Cases: Non-delinquency juvenile matters set to commence before May 4 shall be either continued to a date no earlier than May 4 or conducted with the parties and/or participants appearing remotely

 

  • Emergency Matters: District courts shall continue to conduct the following in-person business
    • Trials and hearings already in progress
    • Criminal matters that cannot be continued or conducted by videoconference or telephone
    • Emergency matters that cannot be conducted by videoconference or telephone
      • of emergency matters include substance abuse treatment proceedings, hospitalization proceedings, removal proceedings, etc.

 

  • Any statute of limitations, statute of repose, or similar deadline commencing an action in district court is tolled from March 17 to May 4

 

Order, March 28, 2020

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/static/media/cms/3_B2DC47BA378E3.pdf]

  • For any criminal case in which an indictment or information has been filed prior to April 20, 2020, the ninety-day deadline (speedy trial) and the one-year deadline for the defendant to be brought to trial will be restarted with April 20, 2020, as day 1.

 

  • Temporarily allowing attorneys to sign civil court documents for their clients if the attorney has received oral verification from the client.

 

  • “To minimize in-person interactions when possible, the court has reviewed court forms published in the Iowa Court Rules and court forms published to the judicial branch website to eliminate notarization requirements where permitted.”
    • The order lists forms in which notarization is currently not required including petitions for relief from various forms of abuse, applications to expunge court records, applications for postconviction relief, etc.

 

  • Clarifying that, for the purposes of determining child custody, care, or visitation under a previously entered court order, “any custody, visitation or care schedule that 5 is related to a school schedule shall be uniformly interpreted to refer to the school schedule for the school where the child attends that was in place prior to any school closure or suspension caused by the COVID-19 virus.”

 

Order, April 02, 2020

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/static/media/cms/04022020_order_4CB0361DDD678.pdf]

  • Order combines all supervisory orders previously issued in response to COVID-19, “only substantively changing the dates to reconvene court proceedings to reflect the extension of the ongoing State of Public Health Disaster Emergency and the Iowa Department of Public Health Disaster Emergency and the Iowa Department of Public Health’s anticipated peak of the virus.”

 

  • Emergency Proceedings: District courts shall continue to conduct the emergency proceedings listed in the March 17 Order

 

  • Emergency and Essential Services: includes (but is not limited to) the following

 

  • The protection of vulnerable people, such as the elderly, children, and persons with disabilities;
  • Initial appearances, preliminary hearings, bail hearings, and arraignment for criminal defendants;
  • Hearings related to quarantine orders and other public-health related matters;
  • Protection orders for individuals who fear for their safety; and
  • Search warrants and other law enforcement actions.

 

  • Criminal Proceedings: Any criminal nonjury trial that is scheduled to begin before June 1, 2020 shall be continued to a date no earlier than June 1
    • Any criminal jury trial that is scheduled to begin before July 13 shall be continued and reset to a date no earlier than July 13. Priority is based off of non-waiver of speedy trial and custody of the defendant.

 

  • The Order notes that not only is the COVID-19 outbreak good cause for any trial postponements, but also “because significant logistical issues—including a backlog of cases—are expected even when trials restart, the court finds good cause to extend the speedy trial deadline in rule 2.33(2)(b) beyond ninety days.”
    • The ninety-day deadline is expanded to 120 days, and shall be restarted with July 13, 2020 as Day 1

 

  • All grand jury proceedings shall be suspended until July 13

 

  • Judicial officers are encouraged to consider pretrial release options

 

  • Through August 3, magistrates and other judicial officers may conduct initial appearance and bond reviews and accept written guilty pleas in felony cases by videoconference or telephone

 

  • For felony or misdemeanor sentencing hearings through August 3, district courts may allow any party to appear by videoconference or telephone with that party’s consent
    • Where the prosecutor and the defendant have reached an agreement as to sentence, and the agreement is accepted by the court, the court has the discretion to pronounce judgment and sentence by written order without the parties appearing remotely, provided certain conditions are met

 

 

  • Civil Cases: All civil nonjury trials and other hearings set to commence before June 15 shall be continued to a date no earlier than June 15 or conducted by telephone
    • All civil jury trials set to commence before August 3 shall be continued to a date no earlier than August 3
    • All forcible entry and detainer proceedings set to commence before June 15 shall be either continued to a date no earlier than June 15 or conducted by telephone

 

  • Juvenile Cases: Non-delinquency juvenile matters set to commence before June 15 shall be continued to a date no earlier than June 15 or conducted remotely

 

  • Appellate Oral Arguments: The appellate courts will not hear in-person oral arguments through July 13, 2020 but cases for oral argument may be submitted nonorally or heard through remote means

 

  • Statute of Limitations: tolled from March 17 to June 1

 

  • Through June 1, the court temporarily authorizes filing by email for all self-represented persons who have not already registered for electronic filing or all persons excused from the electronic filing registration and requirements

 

Order, April 06, 2020

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/static/media/cms/04062020_order_B260334579193.pdf]

  • Specifically focusing on youth and families involved with child welfare and juvenile justice systems

 

  • Juvenile court and DHS are expected to expedite the reunification of families if the youth’s safety will not be jeopardized
    • Family time should be protected and prioritized, and DHS and the juvenile court should make individualized determinations if in-person visits can be conducted in a safe manner

 

  • Emergency proceedings include but are not limited to proceedings for removal of a child or out of home placement; hospitalization proceedings; substance abuse treatment proceedings; etc.
    • If a juvenile court determines it is not safe to hold an emergency hearing in-person, then the emergency hearing shall be held remotely

 

  • Juvenile Court Services is encouraged to review the status of youth in congregate care who may be appropriate for early discharge after consultation with the youth, care takers, family members, child’s attorney, county attorney, and juvenile court
    • Electronic monitoring may be used “to enhance supervision of high-risk youth”

 

Order, April 17, 2020

[https://www.iowacourts.gov/static/media/cms/4_C7DB82E5DE16E.pdf]

  • Extending deadlines for filing pretrial motions to 15 days from the date of arraignment for trials scheduled to occur on or after June 1

 

  • Clarifying that if the defendant does not waive personal appearance, the district court has authority to continue any hearing on pretrial motions until June 1 or later
    • Sentencing may be continued through August 3

 

 

 

Michigan Supreme Court

[https://courts.michigan.gov/News-Events/Pages/AOs.aspx]

 

Order, No. 2020-1, March 15, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-03-15_FormattedOrder_AO2020-1.pdf]

  • Trial courts may adjourn:
    • any civil matters and any criminal matters where the defendant is not in custody
    • Where a criminal defendant is in custody, trial courts should expand the use of videoconferencing when the defendant consents

 

  • For civil cases, trial courts should maximize the use of technology to enable and/or require parties to participate remotely
    • Any fees currently charged to allow parties to participate remotely should be waived

 

  • Trial courts should, wherever possible, waive strict adherence to any adjournment rules or policies and administrative and procedural time requirements

 

  • Trial courts should coordinate with the local probation departments to allow for discretion in the monitoring of probationers’ ability to comply with conditions without the need for amended orders of probation

 

Order, No. 2020-2, March 18, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-03-18_FormattedOrder_AO2020-2.pdf]

  • This order remains in effect until the close of business Friday, April 3, 2020

 

  • Trial courts are ordered to limit access to courtrooms and other spaces to no more than 10 persons including staff

 

  • Circuit Courts
    • Criminal proceedings: To the extent possible and consistent with a defendant’s constitutional and statutory rights, courts should conduct the following hearings remotely
      • For in-custody criminal defendants- pleas, sentencings, arraignments on the information, probation violation arraignments, emergency motions regarding bond, processing of criminal extradition matters
      • Forensic evaluations of juveniles or adults for competence to stand trial, competence to waive Miranda rights, and criminal responsibility shall be permitted over video
      • All other criminal matters, including all non-emergency matters where the defendant is not in custody, shall be adjourned
      • All criminal jury trials shall be adjourned until after April 3, 2020

 

  • General Civil and Business Court cases: infectious disease and limited personal protection order (PPO) proceedings are allowed
    • All other civil and business court matters must be conducted remotely using video technology or them must be adjourned until after April 3, 2020

 

  • Family Court Matters: listing various proceedings allowed in-person
    • Specifies that for juvenile delinquency and child protective proceedings, hearings are required within 24 hours of a juvenile’s apprehension/detention or taking a child into protective custody

 

  • District Courts
    • Same criminal proceedings provisions as the circuit courts
      • Includes “review and issuance of arrest warrants pursuant to MCL 764.1a for crimes that present a danger to public safety.”

 

  • All civil matters must be conducted remotely, or they must be adjourned until after April 3, 2020

 

  • All civil infractions, including trials, must be conducted remotely or they must be adjourned until after April 3, 2020.
    • “No bench warrants shall be issued for individuals failing to appear during the state of emergency.”

 

  • Probate Courts
    • Listing various emergency proceedings which may be held in probate courts including involuntary mental health treatment, immediate funeral/burial arrangements, petitions filed by Adult Protective Services, Ex-parte requests for temporary restraining order, etc.

 

Order, No. 2020-3, March 26, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-03-23_FormattedOrder_AO2020-3.pdf]

  • For all deadlines applicable to the commencement of all civil and probate case-types, any day that falls during the state of emergency declared by the Governor related to COVID-19 is not included
    • This order is intended to extend all deadlines pertaining to case initiation and the filing of initial responsive pleadings in civil and probate matters, but it in no way prohibits or restricts a litigant from commencing a proceeding whenever the litigant chooses

 

Order, No. 2020-4, April 7, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-03-26_FormattedOrder_AO2020-4.pdf]

  • “The deadlines for all filings, jurisdictional and non-jurisdictional, in the Michigan Supreme Court and Court of Appeals are suspended as of March 24, 2020 … and will be tolled until the expiration of EO 2020-21 or a subsequent EO that extends the period in which citizens are required to suspend activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life.”

 

Order, No. 2020-5, April 7, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-03-27_FormattedOrder_AO2020-5.pdf]

  • Extending the expiration date of Administrative Orders No. 2020-1 and 2020-2 until April 14, 2020

 

Order, No. 2020-6, April 10, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-04-07_FormattedOrder_AO2020-6.pdf]

  • Authorizing judicial officers to conduct proceedings remotely using two-way interactive videoconferencing technology or other remote participation tools under the following conditions:
    • any such procedures must be consistent with a party’s Constitutional rights;
    • the procedure must enable confidential communication between a party and the party’s counsel;
    • access to the proceeding must be provided to the public either during the proceeding or immediately after via access to a video recording of the proceeding, unless the proceeding is closed or access would otherwise be limited by statute or rule;
    • the procedure must enable the person conducting or administering the procedure to create a recording sufficient to enable a transcript to be produced subsequent to the activity.

 

  • “all judges in Michigan are required to make a good faith effort to conduct proceedings remotely whenever possible.”
    • Although adjournments are permitted when necessary, courts are directed to implement measures to ensure all matters may proceed as expeditiously as possible under the circumstances
    • “A judge who wishes to participate from a location other than the judge’s courtroom shall do so only with the written permission of the court’s chief judge (email is sufficient).”

 

  • This order is effective during the period of the State of Emergency as Declared by the Governor under E.O. 2020-33 or as further ordered by the Michigan Supreme Court

 

Order, No. 2020-7, April 16, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-04-10_FormattedOrder_AO2020-7.pdf]

  • Extending the prior orders through April 30, 2020 or until further order of the Court

 

Order, No. 2020-8, April 16, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-04-16_FormattedOrder_AO2020-8.pdf]

  • A complainant who filed a summary proceeding action before July 25, 2020 for possession of premises for nonpayment of rent must also submit verification indicating whether the property is exempt from the moratorium provided for under the federal CARES Act

 

  • Effective until July 25, 2020 or as further ordered by the Court

 

Order, No. 2020-9, April 17, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-04-17_FormattedOrder_AO2020-9.pdf]

  • Rules temporarily amended during the state of emergency:
    • Courts must enable a litigant who seeks a fee waiver to do so by an entirely electronic process
    • All service of process under this rule must be performed using electronic means (e-Filing where available, email, or fax, where available) to the greatest extent possible.
    • Subpoenas issued under these rules may require a party or witness to appear by remote means
    • Courts may use two-way videoconferencing technology or other remote participation tools where the court orders a more restrictive placement or more restrictive treatment.

 

  • Suspending the following deadlines as of March 24, 2020 until the expiration of E.O. 2020-42:
    • Expiration of summons
    • Stay of proceedings to enforce judgment
    • Two-year period in which to complete advanced mediation training
    • Post-judgment motions filed in the trial court as well as circuit court appeals and appeals of agency determinations.

 

 

Order. No. 2020-10, April 23, 2020

[https://courts.michigan.gov/Courts/MichiganSupremeCourt/rules/court-rules-admin-matters/Administrative%20Orders/2020-08_2020-04-23_FormattedOrder_AO2020-10.pdf]

  • All jury trials are delayed for a period of 60 days from the date of this order (until June 22, 2020) or as otherwise provided for by local order, whichever date is later

 

 

 

Montana Supreme Court

[https://courts.mt.gov/]

 

Order, March 13, 2020

[https://courts.mt.gov/Portals/189/docs/COVID-19%203-13.pdf]

  • Jurors meet CDC definition of at-risk if they contract the virus must be released from reporting for jury duty if they request release (can be done over the phone)
    • Jurors who are considered high or medium risk should be directed not to report

 

  • Attorneys or self-represented litigants scheduled for a jury trial through April 30th must be given the option, and should be encouraged, to request a continuance or a bench trial
    • Any litigants or attorneys who arrive at court not feeling well must be asked to reschedule their appearance

 

Order, March 17, 2020

[https://courts.mt.gov/Portals/189/docs/COVID-19%203-17.pdf]

  • Civil jury matters should be reset by the court, through April 30th at minimum

 

  • Prosecutors and defense counsel should be encouraged to “find solutions that allow the courts to delay trials”

 

  • Strong suggestion that courts consider the potential danger of congregate care and work with local authorities to evaluate all pre-trial defendants in detention

 

  • Attempt to conduct all necessary matters by video or teleconference
    • Courts of limited jurisdiction in particular should take appropriate steps to minimize-in person contacts

 

  • Priority is given to necessary work in
    • Criminal matters,
    • requests for orders of protection, and
    • child abuse and neglect proceedings.

 

  • Drug courts should suspend in-court and group meetings

 

Letter to Courts of Limited Jurisdiction Judges, March 20, 2020

[https://courts.mt.gov/Portals/189/virus/Ltr%20to%20COLJ%20Judges%20re%20COVID-19%20032020.pdf?ver=2020-03-20-115517-333]

  • Letter from Chief Justice of Montana Supreme Court: Because of high risk of transmission of COVID_19 not only to prisoners but to staff and defense attorneys, the judges are asked to review jail rosters and “release, without bond, as many prisoners as you are able, especially those being held for non-violent offenses.”

 

Order, March 27, 2020

[https://courts.mt.gov/Portals/189/virus/shelter.pdf]

  • All civil and criminal jury trials are suspended until after April 10, 2020
    • Criminal jury trials already in session where a jury has already been sworn may proceed if social distancing measures are observed

 

  • All non-emergency civil matters shall be continued until after April 10, 2020, except those proceedings that can appropriately be conducted by remote means

 

  • All emergency matters, including civil protection and restraining order matters, that should be heard before April 10, 2020 must be heard by remote means unless impossible

 

  • All out of custody criminal matters already pending shall be continues until after April 10, 2020 except proceedings that can be appropriately conducted remotely
    • Initial appearances on out of custody cases filed between March 27 and April 10 shall be conducted remotely if possible
    • All arraignments on out of custody cases shall be postponed until a date after April 10

 

  • All in custody criminal matters shall be continued until after April 10, 2020 except
    • Scheduling and hearing of first appearances, arraignments, plea hearings, criminal motions, and sentence hearings
    • Priority is given to
      • pretrial release and bail modification motions,
      • plea hearings and sentence hearings that result in the anticipated release of the defendant from pretrial detention within 30 days of the hearing
    • Courts must allow telephonic or video appearances for all scheduled criminal hearings between March 27 and through April 10, unless impossible

 

  • Extending juvenile court jurisdiction in all pending offender proceedings and in all cases in which a petition is filed with the juvenile court prior to April 10, 2020, in which the offender will reach the age of 18 within 120 days of April 10, 2020 to the next scheduled juvenile court hearing after April 10

 

  • The court finds that COVID-19 is good cause to continue criminal jury trials, thus the time between the date of this order and the date of the next scheduled trial date are considered institutional delay when calculating time for trial

 

  • Finding that obtaining signature from defendants for order places significant burdens on attorneys, particularly public defenders, and therefore this order serves to continue criminal jury trials and out of custody criminal matters suspended by this order
    • Defense counsel is not required to obtain signatures from defendants on orders to continue criminal matters through April 10, 2020

 

  • Bench warrants may issue for violations of conditions of release from now through April 10, 2020
    • Courts should not issue bench warrants for failure to appear in-person for court hearings and pretrial supervision meetings unless necessary for the immediate preservation of public or individual safety

 

  • Courts shall hear motions for pretrial release on an expedited basis without requiring a motion to shorten time
    • For those identified as part of a vulnerable or at-risk population by the CDC, COVID-19 is presumed to be a material change in circumstances and the parties do not need to supply additional briefing on COVID-19
    • For all other cases, the COVID-19 crisis may constitute a material change in circumstances and new information allowing amendment of a previous bail order or providing different conditions of release, but this is left to the discretion of the trial court

 

Memo, April 22, 2020

[https://courts.mt.gov/Portals/189/virus/4-22-20covid.pdf?ver=2020-04-22-173817-920]

  • Letter to judges in response to the eventual return to normal operations

 

  • Extends the March 27 order until May 4, 2020 and “asking courts to implement the following practices, at a minimum, after May 4, 2020:”
    • Continue using remote measures for most cases
    • Maintain psychical distancing in courthouses
    • Implementing screening for individuals entering the courthouse
      • Chief Judge notes that the Supreme Court is currently working on determining how to pay for these services for District Court
    • Strongly encouraged to require the use of face coverings or masks for people entering the courthouse

 

  • Planning for returning to necessary jury trials, which at minimum requires
    • Managing voir dire beginning with enhances questionnaires to identify those in the potentially at-risk category
    • Excuse jurors in advance who may be high-risk or have other appropriate reasons to not report
    • all jurors in smaller groups and space jurors throughout the building for voir dire
    • Seat jurors in compliance with physical distancing during the trial and deliberations
    • Limit any in-court spectators
    • Make hand sanitizer and masks available to those in the courtroom

 

 

 

 

New Jersey Supreme Court

[https://njcourts.gov/public/covid19.html]

 

Consent Order, Request for Relief, March 22, 2020

[https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200323a.pdf?c=61k]

  • Came before the Court as request for relief from Office of the Public Defender, asking the Court to consider a proposed order for commuting or suspending county jail sentences currently being served in certain cases

 

  • By 6:00 am on Tuesday, March 24, 2020, any inmate currently serving a county jail sentence (1) as a condition of probation for an indictable offense or (2) because of a municipal court conviction, shall be ordered released by the Court
    • For inmates serving as a condition of probation, the custodial portion must either be served at the end of the probationary portion of the sentence or converted into a “time served” condition
    • For inmates serving as a result of a municipal court conviction, the custodial portion of the sentence is suspended until further order from the Court

 

  • By noon on Thursday, March 26, 2020, any inmate currently serving a county jail sentence for any other reason shall be ordered released by the Court.
    • These other sentences may include for probation violations or county jail sentences not tethered to a probationary sentence for a fourth-degree crime or disorderly persons offense
    • The custodial portion of the sentence is suspended until further order from the Court

 

  • If a prosecutor of the Attorney General objects to the release of an inmate, they must file a written objection with the Court stating why the release of the inmate would pose significant risk to the safety of the inmate or the public.
    • The objection shall delay the order of release of the inmate
    • The Office of the Public Defender shall provide provisional representation to all inmates against whom an objection has been lodged and will provide responses to any of these objections as it deems appropriate
    • Objections will be considered by judges or Special Masters appointed by the Court.
      • They will conduct summary proceedings, and release shall be presumed.
      • To overcome the presumption, there must be a finding by a preponderance of the evidence that the release of the inmate would pose a significant risk to the safety of the inmate or the public. In such case, the inmate shall be ordered to serve the balance of the original sentence.
      • Any decisions, for immediate release or continued incarceration, are appealable.

 

  • Upon the issuance of orders of release, jails are required to process the release of inmates as efficiently as possible, but are not expected to have immediate or simultaneous release for all inmates ordered released

 

  • County Prosecutors and other law enforcement must, to the extent practicable, provide notice to victims of the accelerated release of inmates (especially in cases of domestic violence)

 

  • In the following circumstances, the county jail shall not release an inmate pursuant to the above requirements without additional instructions from the judges or Special Masters
    • Inmates who have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been identified by the jail as presumptively positive for COVID-19
      • Jails must confer with judges to determine a plan for isolating the inmate and ensuring medical treatment
      • Any inmate being released from a county jail who appears to be symptomatic for COVID-19 is required to self-quarantine for 14 days

 

  • Inmates who notify the county jail that they do not want to be released from detention due to safety, health, or housing concerns
    • Jails must confer with judges to determine whether release may still be order over the inmate’s objection

 

  • Any warrants associates with an inmate subject to release under this order, other than those associated with first-degree or second-degree crimes, shall be suspended until 10 days after the rescission of the Public Health Emergency.

 

  • All conditions, other than in-person reporting, originally imposed by the trial court shall remain in full force and effect.
    • County jails must inform inmates, prior to their release, of this continuing obligation.
    • In-person reporting to probation officers will be converted to telephone or video reporting until further order

 

Omnibus Order, March 27, 2020

[https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200327a.pdf?c=biu]

 

 

Omnibus Order, April 24, 2020

[https://njcourts.gov/notices/2020/n200424a.pdf]

 

 

 

 

Ohio Supreme Court

[http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/coronavirus/default.aspx]

 

Administrative Order, March 27, 2020

[http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/rod/docs/pdf/0/2020/2020-Ohio-1166.pdf]

  • The order applies retroactively to the date of the public health emergency declared by E.O. 2020-01D and shall expire on the date the period ends or July 30, 2020, whichever is sooner

 

  • Any requirement in a rule of the Court that a party appear in person or requiring in-person service may be waived and appearance or service by use of technology may be allowed if it sufficiently guarantees the integrity of the proceedings and protects the parties’ interests and rights

 

  • Time requirements imposed by the rules of the Court and set to expire during the term of this order shall be tolled
    • Upon expiration of this order, all time requirements tolled shall resume

 

  • Nothing in this order precludes filings during the duration of the order if the court or other body is able to receive filings “due to local accommodations and the matter is related to a situation that requires immediate attention”

 

  • Courts may still require filings in accordance with existing rules and issue orders setting a specific schedule in a case, notwithstanding the tolling of time requirements imposed by this order
    • A specific order in a case issued on or after March 9, 2020, shall supersede the tolling provisions of this order, unless otherwise noted in that specific order.

 

 

(Guidance to courts) Updated March 30, 2020

[http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/coronavirus/resources/localCourtGuidance03.20.20.pdf]

  • Not a mandatory order, rather an example of the “number of options that should be considered under existing authority”
  • Topics:
    • Efforts to minimize physical appearances at court
      • Suggests sua sponte granting of continuances for nonessential court appearances
        • essential proceeding- one in which relief is necessary to protect a person’s health, safety, housing, or to prevent some other imminent, serious harm that cannot be remedied if allowed to occur
      • Temporarily continue eviction filings
      • Temporarily stay the filing and enforcement of any garnishment actions or orders
      • Cancel or postpone probation/community control violation hearings if the alleged violation is not a new criminal offense

 

  • Access to the Courts

 

  • Bail, Bonds, and Warrants
    • Issue recognizance bonds at bail hearings, unless there is clear and convincing evidence that recognizance release would present a substantial risk of harm.
    • Temporarily stop issuing bench warrants for FTA’s for traffic violations, minor misdemeanor, and non-violent misdemeanor offenses
      • Suggests generally refraining from bench warrants
    • Impose sentences with the presumption that the sentence will be noncustodial, unless there is a clear and convincing risk that release would present a substantial risk of harm

 

  • Incarcerated Individuals
    • Discretionary release of individuals held in jail
      • Encourages release of incarcerated individuals who are in a high-risk category for being infected with the virus (e.g., the elderly, those with asthma, cancer, heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes) unless there is clear and convincing evidence that release would present a substantial risk of harm.
      • Individuals incarcerated for non-violent misdemeanor offense may be released and placed on community-control sanctions (ex. GPS or electronic monitoring) unless clear and convincing evidence that release would present a substantial risk of harm

 

  • Communication

 

Administrative Order, April 14, 2020

[http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/rod/docs/pdf/0/2020/2020-Ohio-1461.pdf]

  • Effective on April 21, 2020 and shall expire on the date the emergency period declared by Executive Order 2020-01D ends or July 30, 2020, whichever is sooner.

 

  • Supersedes the March 27 order as it applies to the time requirements prescribed by the Rules of Practice of the Supreme Court
    • any document filed between March 9 and April 21, and for which a time requirement had expired during that time period, the document is deemed properly filed
    • any document that has not been filed and for which a time requirement would have expired between March 9 and April 21, but for the March 27, 2020 order, the party shall file the document within 30 days of this order
    • any other document that is filed after April 21, 2020, the party shall comply with the applicable time requirements.

 

 

Oregon Supreme Court

[https://www.courts.oregon.gov/courts/Pages/coronavirus.aspx]

 

Order, March 16, 2020

[https://www.courts.oregon.gov/news/Lists/ArticleNews/Attachments/1303/acd3fb79befadf4982b20ceba127ffd0-2020-03-16_COVID-19_News.pdf]

  • Level three restrictions on operations
  • Postpones jury trials and other trials, including no scheduling of new jury trials,
  • Standard in-person suspension order (undated)
    • Grand jury proceedings or preliminary hearings for felony indictments;
    • Case scheduling or docket management hearings
      • Absent a party’s motion to postpone such a trial, the court shall not postpone such trials unless it determines that postponement will not violate a statutory or constitutional right.
    • First appearances are postponed, and all parties who are required to appear on the date set by summons shall be deemed to have appeared

 

  • Bans in-state and out-of-state work-related travel and bans internal meetings of five or more people
    • Presiding judges in each county have discretion over which court staff need to work at the courthouse
    • Must significantly limit the number of people in the courthouses

 

  • Each court shall determine the in-person court services that the court is legally required to provide, and each court must continue to provide those services. Courts shall not provide any other in-person services.

 

Order, March 27, 2020

[https://www.courts.oregon.gov/rules/Documents/CJO-20-006-AmendedOrderImposingLevel3RestrictionsCourtOperations.pdf]

 

Order, April 7, 2020

[https://www.courts.oregon.gov/Documents/CJO20-012.pdf]

  • Classifying any petition for a writ of habeas corpus or any trial held on such a petition as an essential proceeding which shall be scheduled and held in accordance with statutory timeline, and shall not be postponed beyond those timelines, unless, when authorized by statute, on motion of a party or agreement of the parties
    • May be scheduled to begin on a date before June 1, 2020
    • Shall be conducted by remote means if reasonably feasible and permitted by law

 

Pennsylvania Supreme Court

[http://www.pacourts.us/ujs-coronavirus-information]

 

Order, General Statewide Emergency, March 16, 2020

[http://www.pacourts.us/assets/files/page-1305/file-8500.pdf]

 

Order, Superior Court and Commonwealth Court, March 16, 2020

[http://www.pacourts.us/assets/files/page-1305/file-8525.pdf]

 

Order, Supreme Court operations, March 17, 2020

[http://www.pacourts.us/assets/files/page-1305/file-8612.pdf]

 

Order, General Statewide Emergency, March 18, 2020

[http://www.pacourts.us/assets/files/page-1305/file-8634.pdf]

 

Order, March 24, 2020

[http://www.pacourts.us/assets/files/page-1305/file-8839.pdf]

 

Order, March 30, 2020

[http://www.pacourts.us/assets/files/page-1305/file-8840.pdf]

 

Order, April 1, 2020

[http://www.pacourts.us/assets/files/page-1305/file-8846.pdf]

  • Extending statewide judicial emergency through April 30, 2020
    • All Pennsylvania courts shall remain generally closed to the public

 

  • All time calculations relevant to court cases or other judicial business are suspended through April 30
    • any legal papers or pleadings which are required to be filed between March 19 and April 30 shall be deemed to have been timely filed if they are filed by May 1

 

  • Encourages and specifically authorizes use of “advanced communication technology to conduct court proceedings,” subject only to constitutional limitations

 

  • Prior order required any in-person pretrial conference, case management conference, status conference, diversionary program, discovery motions practice, motions practice, or other hearing (civil or criminal) were postponed until a future date
    • To the extent that any of these matters, deemed non-essential, can be handled through advanced communication technology they may proceed (consistent with constitutional limitations)

 

  • No officer, official, or other person employed by the Pennsylvania Judiciary at any level shall effectuate an eviction, ejectment, or other displacement from a residence based upon the failure to make a monetary payment.
    • Such payments include rent, loan payments, and property tax payments.

 

Order, April 13, 2020

[http://www.pacourts.us/assets/files/page-1305/file-9002.pdf]

 

 

 

Tennessee Supreme Court

[https://www.tncourts.gov/Coronavirus]

 

Order, March 13, 2020

[http://www.tncourts.gov/sites/default/files/docs/covid-19_order.pdf]

 

Order, March 25, 2020

[http://tncourts.gov/sites/default/files/docs/order_-_2020-03-25t120936.486.pdf]

  • Local and state courts are open and will remain open under the circumstances provided in the order
    • Non-emergency matters that do not require in-person court proceedings are still being handled, and other remote means are being employed

 

 

  • Other in-person exceptions must be approved by the chief justice, and the presiding judge of each judicial district is authorized to determine the manner in which in-person court proceedings are conducted.
    • Social distancing measures must be observed

 

  • Any Tennessee state or local rule, criminal or civil, that impedes a judge’s or court clerk’s ability to utilize available technologies to limit in-person contact is suspended through Thursday, April 30, 2020.
    • With respect to plea agreements for non-incarcerated individuals, this suspension expressly applies to those provisions of Tenn. R. Crim. P. 11 which otherwise would require the proceeding to be in person in open court.

 

  • Requires the presiding judge (or designee) to develop a written plan to affirmatively address issues regarding the incarceration of nonviolent offenders in furtherance of efforts to reduce the jail population
    • may include bond reductions or eliminations, deferred sentences, and suspended sentences
    • plans must be submitted to the Administrative Office of the Courts by close of business Monday, March 30, 2020

 

  • No judge, clerk, or other court official shall take any action to effectuate an eviction, ejectment, or other displacement from a residence through April 30, 2020 based upon the failure to make rent, loan, or other similar payments (absent extraordinary circumstances)

 

 

Order, March 31, 2020

[http://www.tncourts.gov/sites/default/files/docs/sct_covid-19_order_-_3-31-2020.pdf]

 

Order, April 02, 2020

[http://tncourts.gov/sites/default/files/docs/tsc_order_electronic_signatures.pdf]

 

Order, April 24, 2020

[http://www.tncourts.gov/sites/default/files/docs/sct_covid-19_order_4-24-2020_2.pdf]

 

 

Texas Supreme Court

[https://www.txcourts.gov/media/coronavirus-covid-19-emergency-orders/]

 

Order 1, March 13, 2020

[http://www.txcourts.gov/media/1446056/209042.pdf]

 

Order 4, March 19, 2020

[http://www.txcourts.gov/media/1446203/209045.pdf]

 

Order 5, March 20, 2020

[https://www.txcourts.gov/media/1446205/209046.pdf]

 

Order 8, April 1, 2020

[https://www.txcourts.gov/media/1446315/209051.pdf]

 

Order 9, April 6, 2020

[https://www.txcourts.gov/media/1446345/209052.pdf]

 

Order 10, April 9, 2020

[https://www.txcourts.gov/media/1446356/209054.pdf]

 

 

Washington Supreme Court

[http://www.courts.wa.gov/newsinfo/index.cfm?fa=newsinfo.COVID19]

 

Order, March 4, 2020

[http://www.courts.wa.gov/content/publicUpload/Supreme%20Court%20Orders/SC%20Order%20Closure%2025700-B-602.pdf]

  • The Presiding Judges of the Washington courts are authorized to adopt, modify, and suspend court rules and orders, and to take further actions concerning court operations, as warranted to address the current public health emergency

 

  • Each court shall immediately transmit copies of emergency local rules adopted or modified to the Administrative Office of the Courts

 

Order, March 16, 2020

[http://www.courts.wa.gov/content/publicUpload/Supreme%20Court%20Orders/SC%20Order%20Closure%2025700-B-602%20Temple%20of%20Justice.pdf]

  • The Temple of Justice Building shall be closed to the public until the next scheduled oral argument on May 5, 2020

 

Order, March 20, 2020

[http://www.courts.wa.gov/content/publicUpload/Supreme%20Court%20Orders/Supreme%20Court%20Emergency%20Order%20re%20CV19%20031820.pdf]

  • All civil jury trials are suspended until after April 24, 2020
    • Trials already in session where a jury has been sworn, and adequate public health measures including social distancing are being observed, may proceed unless continued to a later date at the discretion of the trial court

 

  • All non-emergency civil matters are continued until after April 24, 2020 except those proceedings that can be conducted by various remote means
  • All emergency matters, including civil protection and restraining order matters, that must be heard before April 24, 2020 must be heard through remote means unless impossible.
    • If they must be done in-person, public health measures must be strictly observed
    • Telephone, video, or other hearings required to be public must be recorded
  • All criminal jury trials are suspended until after April 24, 2020
    • Trials already in session where a jury has been sworn, and adequate public health measures including social distancing are being observed, may proceed or be continued if the defendant agrees to a continuance
  • All out of custody criminal matters already pending shall be continued until after April 24, 2020 except proceedings that can be conducted through remote means
    • Arraignment on out of custody cases filed between March 20 and April 24, 2020 or the first appearance in court after that date shall be deferred until a date 45 days after the filing of charges.
  • All in custody criminal matters shall be continued until after April 24, 2002
    • Except scheduling and hearing of first appearances, arraignments, plea hearings, criminal motions, and sentencing hearings.
    • Priority shall be given to
      • Pretrial release and bail modification motions
      • Plea hearings and sentencing hearings that result in the anticipated release of the defendant from pretrial detention within 30 days of the hearing
  • Courts may enter ex parte no contact orders when an information, citation, or complaint is filed with the court and the court finds that probable cause is present for a sex offense, domestic violence offense, stalking offense, or harassment offense.
    • Ex parte orders may be served upon the defendant by mail.
  • Bench warrants may issue for violations of conditions of release from now through April 24, 2020. However, courts should not issue bench warrants for failure to appear in-person for court hearings and pretrial supervision meetings unless necessary for the immediate preservation of public or individual safety.
  • The order requires courts to hear motions for pretrial release on an expedited bases, but only if victims or witnesses can participate on an expedited basis.
    • For individuals identifies as part of vulnerable or at-risk population by the CDC, COVID-19 is presumed to be a material change in circumstances.
      • If a hearing is required, the court must schedule such hearing within 5 days and is encouraged to expedite all hearings
    • For all other cases, the COVID-19 crisis may constitute a material change in circumstances, allowing amendment of a previous bail order or providing different conditions of release, but this is up to the discretion of the trial court.
  • Courts must allow telephonic or video appearances for all scheduled criminal hearings between now and through April 24, 2020, unless impossible.
    • For all hearings that involve a critical stage of the proceedings, courts shall provide a means for the defendant to have the opportunity for private and continual discussion with his or her attorney.

Order, April 2, 2020

[http://www.courts.wa.gov/content/publicUpload/Supreme%20Court%20Orders/25700B610EMERGENCYORDERTemporarySuspensionofInPersonOathsandAffirmations.pdf]

  • Suspending any local or state court rule that requires administering any oath or affirmation in-person where such oaths or affirmations can be administered remotely

 

Order, April 3, 2020

[http://www.courts.wa.gov/content/publicUpload/Supreme%20Court%20Orders/Emergency%20Order%20on%20Dependency%20and%20Termination%20Cases%204-03-2020.pdf]

  • Finding that shelter care hearings are emergency matters, and between April3 and May 5, 2020, courts and all parties in shelter care hearings shall make their best efforts to make it possible for these emergency matters to be heard remotely
    • Courts have the authority to determine that any hearing in a dependency case is an emergency matter, depending on the facts and circumstances of that case
  • If, pursuant to the Governor’s Proclamation 20-33 and Directive 20-02, the Department of Children, Youth, and Families modifies in-person visits between children and their parents or children and their siblings, DCYF will notify the parties of any modification, the child if 12 or older or their counsel if represented, and the CASA/Guardian ad Litem.
    • Upon motions by a parent or child seeking in-person visits courts should consider whether such motions present an emergency, and if they do present an emergency, hear them by remote means if possible.
    • Any court-ordered in-person visitation shall mandate the specific health, safety and welfare protocols that must be followed.
  • For hearings set between now and May 5, 2020, juvenile courts may find that the COVID-19 pandemic is a basis to find a good cause exception not to order the DCYF to file a petition to terminate parental rights.

Order, April 13, 2020

[http://www.courts.wa.gov/content/publicUpload/Supreme%20Court%20Orders/25700B615%20Revised%20and%20Extended%20Order%20Regarding%20Court%20Operations.pdf]

Order, Re: Civil Commitment Proceedings, April 15, 2020

[http://www.courts.wa.gov/content/publicUpload/Supreme%20Court%20Orders/Civil%20Commitment%20Order%2025700B616.pdf]