Date: June 2, 2020
Courts in Five Upstate Judicial Districts to Begin Second Phase of Gradual Return to In-Person Operations
NEW YORK – As New York steadily recovers from the COVID pandemic, Chief Judge Janet DiFiore and Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence K. Marks today announced that, beginning tomorrow, courts spanning three upstate judicial districts will enter their second phase of a gradual return to in-person operations, coinciding with Phase Two of un-PAUSE New York.
Courts in the Fifth Judicial District (Syracuse and surrounding counties), Sixth Judicial District (Binghamton and surrounding counties) and Seventh Judicial District (Rochester and surrounding counties) will enter Phase Two on Wednesday, June 3; followed on Friday, June 5, by courts throughout the Eighth Judicial District (Buffalo and surrounding counties) and courts in most counties encompassing the Fourth Judicial District (northern New York).
“As we progress toward fuller in-person court operations across the State, our foremost priority remains protecting the health and safety of all those who work in and visit our court facilities,” said Chief Judge DiFiore.
Over the past two weeks, judges, chambers staff and support staff in courts in the previously mentioned judicial districts−which have all met the Governor’s safety benchmarks−have been returning to their courthouses.
The goal of Phase II is to safely increase courthouse foot traffic in a gradual manner, so that the Court can select matters that require an in-person appearance while continuing to maximize virtual appearances, as follows:
Steps implemented during Phase II to encourage physical distancing and reduce the number of people in any given room in courthouses include staggering case types, court calendars and courtroom use. During Phase II, non-judicial staffing levels will minimally increase to support necessary administrative court functions as well as to provide support for the increase in foot traffic into the courthouse. Non-reporting court staff will continue to work virtually.
Phase One measures that will remain in place to protect the health and safety of judges and staff, attorneys, litigants and members of the public, include:
Individuals with court-related questions are encouraged to call their designated county courthouse.
Additional legal information and resources can also be found at the following websites:
For information and updates from the New York State Unified Court System on the coronavirus, please visit www.nycourts.gov or call the Coronavirus Telephone Hotline at 833-503-0447.
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