On Thursday, April 2, 2020, The Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court, citing ‘catastrophic conditions resulting from the COVID-19 outbreak [that] have existed and continue to exist in all counties of this state’, issued an order directing:
All superior court and district court proceedings, including proceedings before the clerks of superior court, be scheduled or rescheduled for a date no sooner than 1 June 2020, unless:
- The proceeding will be conducted remotely;
- The proceeding is necessary to preserve the right to due process of law (e.g., a first appearance or bond hearing, the appointment of counsel for an indigent defendant, a probation hearing, a probable cause hearing, etc.);
- The proceeding is for the purpose of obtaining emergency relief (e.g., a domestic violence protection order, temporary restraining order, juvenile custody order, judicial consent to juvenile medical treatment order, civil commitment order, etc.); or
- The senior resident superior court judge, chief business court judge, or chief district court judge determines that the proceeding can be conducted under conditions that protect the health and safety of all participants.
The order does authorize judicial officials throughout the state to conduct proceedings by remote audio and video transmissions, notwithstanding any other North Carolina statutory or regulatory provision.
You can find all the Court’s orders and announcements here.
If you have questions about how your case may be impacted by this order or other COVID-19-related directives, please contact our Complex Litigation team, or your Manning Fulton relationship attorney.