What are all those dates again? And another extension from Justice Beasley

April 6, 2020
Columns, courthouse architecture

This article originally appeared on the North Carolina Bar Association's Blog on April 3, 2020.

I know it is difficult keeping track of all the moving dates and deadlines. For your convenience, here is a chart with all the current extensions. Below the chart is an update about Justice Beasley’s latest order pushing out state trial court proceedings into June.

Court

Nature of Proceedings

Continued through

Authority

NC District Court & Superior Court

All in-court proceedings (likely also mediations), with limited exceptions including proceedings implicating due process rights

June 1, 2020

Justice Beasley’s Apr. 2, 2020 Order

Deadlines for all trial court filings and certain periods of limitation

April 17, 2020 – though Justice Beasley expects to extend those further

Justice Beasley’s March 19, 2020 Order

NC Supreme Court

All appellate court filings due between March 27 – April 30

Deadlines extended by 60 days

March 27, 2020 Supreme Court Order

WDNC

Criminal trials

June 1

April 1, 2020 Order

MDNC

Civil jury trials and criminal cases

May 4

Standing Order 13

EDNC

Civil jury trials and criminal cases

May 1

Standing Order 5

 

More Details on Justice Beasley’s Latest Order

Chief Justice Beasley entered an additional order on April 2, 2020, further postponing state court proceedings. Among other things, the order provides:

  • All superior court and district court proceedings must be scheduled or rescheduled for a date no sooner than June 1, 2020, unless the proceeding: 
  1. will be conducted remotely,
  2. is necessary to preserve due process (such as first appearances, bond hearings, appointment of counsel, probation hearings, and probable cause hearings),
  3. is for emergency relief (such as DV protection orders, TROs, juvenile custody or medical treatment orders, and civil commitment orders), or
  4. the chief judge determines that the proceeding can be conducted under conditions that protect the health and safety of all participants.

The order did not clarify whether, if someone has noticed a hearing between now and June 1, the onus will be on the parties or the court to move the hearing.

  • Courts must post notices at their entrance directing that anyone who is likely to have been exposed to COVID-19 not enter the courthouse.  The order also restricts the presence of attorneys in a courthouse if the attorneys are not contemporaneously conducting business.
  • Judges may conduct remote proceedings, but they must have the consent of each party to do so and certain other restrictions apply. If a criminal defendant’s right to confront witnesses or to be present is implicated by the proceeding, the defendant must waive any right to those things before the proceeding can be conducted remotely.
  • Anything that must be verified or signed under oath may be affirmed using specific language in the order. This exception does not apply to wills to be probated, conveyances of real estate, or any document not to be filed in the General Court of Justice.
  • Parties may consent to service by email. If serving by email, the email must be time stamped by 5:00 p.m. for it to be “served” on that business day.
  • The due dates for any monies owed pursuant to a judgment or order entered by a court in a criminal or infraction case will be extended.

The Chief Justice closes by saying that this order is effective immediately, expiring May 1, but that she “fully expect[s]” to extend the directives for an additional 30-day period.


Brooks Pierce is dedicated to keeping our clients fully informed during the COVID-19 crisis. For more information, please visit our COVID-19 Response Resources page.

Share this link

Related Attorneys and Professionals