Thursday, May 14, 2020

New York State Courts in 30 Upstate Counties to Re-Open for Business

Beginning next week, New York State court system judges and chambers staff, along with designated clerks and support staff, will be returning to their courthouses in the following counties:

On Monday, May 18, 2020:


On Wednesday, May 20, 2020:

 St. Lawrence

 The NYS courts' press release announcing these courts' reopenings adds:
Importantly, new cases may be filed in these counties electronically.
That means new civil actions will be filed in those counties, folks.  Count on it.

Yesterday's press release states that "[c]ourthouse areas that will be used in this first phase include judges’ chambers, clerks’ offices and back offices."  Courtrooms aren't on that list.  That means no trials yet.
Social distancing and other steps restricting courthouse traffic will be enforced to protect the health and safety of judges and staff, attorneys, litigants and members of the public. Among other safety measures: 
• Non-employee court visitors will be required to undergo COVID-19 screening before entering the courthouse. 
• All staff who interact with court visitors must wear a mask. 
• Anyone entering the courthouse will be required to wear a mask, with masks available for those who need one. 
• Courtroom and other areas will be carefully marked to ensure proper physical distancing. 
• Court facilities will be regularly sanitized.
• Hand sanitizer dispensers will be available throughout the courthouse.
• Acrylic barriers and other safety features will be installed in courthouse areas as needed.
For law firms like mine that litigate civil matters, this is welcome news.

No comments: