MORE ON COURT CLOSURES AND PROCEEDINGS
AFTER EXTENSION OF STAY AT HOME ORDER
This post updates our most recent blog post An Update On Court Closures And Legal Proceedings In Louisiana to provide the latest information on court closures and extension of legal deadlines.
It came as no big surprise that courts did not reopen to the public on May 4, 2020. On April 30, Governor John Bel Edwards formally extended Louisiana’s Stay at Home order until May 15, 2020. After May 15, we could move to “Phase 1” and see an ease of restrictions on some public spaces and gatherings. However, another extension of the Stay at Home order is possible.
In connection with the extension of the Stay at Home order, Governor Edwards issued Proclamation 52 JBE 2020 suspending all legal deadlines, including liberative prescription and preemptive periods, until at least May 15, 2020.
Here is where things currently stand as of May 6 in relation to court closures and suspension of legal deadlines in certain courts. You can view the COVID-19 related orders of all Louisiana State and federal courts by going to lasc.org or checking the individual court websites.
Louisiana Supreme Court
The Louisiana Supreme Court has ordered there will be no jury trials in state court before July 1. All filings which were or are due to the Court between Thursday, March 12, 2020 through Friday, May 15, 2020 are considered timely if filed no later than Monday, May 18, 2020. The prohibition on in-person proceedings is extended until May 18, 2020.
Louisiana Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal
The closure of the Louisiana Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal courthouse building is extended through at least May 15, 2020.
In accordance with the Fifth Circuit’s order of May 1, 2020, filings otherwise due between March 12, 2020 and May 15, 2020 shall be considered timely if filed on or before May 18, 2020.
The Court heard its first oral arguments via Zoom on May 5 and May 6. To learn how to attend oral argument via Zoom go to: http://www.fifthcircuit.org/PDF/ZoomWebinarInstructions_04282020.pdf
24th Judicial District Court (Jefferson Parish)
The period of closure for the 24th Judicial District Court is extended until May 18, 2020. After May 18, entry to the courthouse will then be subject to the Phase 1 restrictions set forth in the Court’s order of April 29, 2020 (https://www.24jdc.us/blog/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Order-2020-006-24th-JDC-2020-04-29.pdf).
Individuals are to use the Sine Pro app to check in when they arrive at the courthouse.
The Court has created a virtual court system that will likely serve as a model for other virtual courts across the state. View it here: https://courtonline.us
In addition, all jury trials are suspended until July 1. Any and all preliminary or permanent injunctions, protective orders, temporary restraining orders, ex parte protective orders, and/or criminal stay away orders are extended until July 1.
Civil District Court (Orleans Parish)
On April 30, the Court issued COVID Order 2020-05.
Pursuant to this order, any and all preliminary or permanent injunctions, protective orders, temporary restraining orders, ex parte protective orders are extended until May 22.
All evictions are stayed in Orleans Parish until May 18, 2020 or when the Governor lifts the “stay at home order.”
All civil hearings, scheduled between May 1, 2020 and May 18, 2020, may proceed by video conference via Zoom or Skype platform with the consent of the parties. All civil jury trials are suspended until July 1.
19th Judicial District Court (East Baton Rouge)
As of this time, the courthouse is closed until 8:00 a.m. on Friday May 15, 2020. Those will pending civil matters set during the closure period will be notified of a new court date.
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana
The Court has issued COVID-19 General Order No. 20-26.
In general, the order:
(1) continues all civil and criminal bench and jury trials until August 1, 2020, to a date to be reset by each presiding judge, but does not continue any other pending deadlines; and
(2) continues all civil and criminal in-person hearings, proceedings, and conferences until August 1, 2020, to be reset by each presiding judge.
Attorneys with pending cases should check with the division of court where their case is pending to determine whether applicable pretrial deadlines are extended.
U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana
All trials (bench and jury) are postponed to a date, to be determined by the presiding Judge, after June 30, 2020. This postponement does not affect any other pending deadlines other than the pre-trial conference and trial dates.
All civil evidentiary hearings and other in-court hearings and proceedings requiring personal appearances set between May 1 and June, 2020 are postponed, to be reset by, and at the discretion of, the presiding Judge.
U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals
All current deadlines for attorney filers remain in effect, except for those regarding production of paper copies.
The court has authorized panels to conduct oral arguments using video-conferencing technology or by means of audioconferencing.