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As announced in the October 20, 2020 notice to the bar, the Judiciary through its Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Engagement Program will offer a series of real-time virtual courses on implicit bias and elimination of bias throughout calendar year 2021. These courses provide one option for attorneys to fulfill the requirement established by the Supreme Court’s amendment to Rule 1:42-1 (“Continuing Legal Education Required”) and CLE regulations 103:1 and 201:1 to require diversity, inclusion, and elimination of bias training for attorneys licensed in New Jersey. They will be offered at no cost to the attendees.

The Judiciary will present the initial such course – “Tools for Advancing Equity: Engaging in the Elimination of Bias” (2.0 CLE credits) – at least once each month during 2021, as follows:

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By Charles J.X. Kahwaty

Different tradesmen use different tools in their work. A baseball catcher relies on his glove and a quick arm. A mechanic on his wrench and plyers. A writer on the power of his pen. But if you know Frank O’Marrra, his tool has always been the telephone. And after January 22, 2021, that phone will be a little quieter.

For on that date Francis R. O’Marra, Jr., the longest serving Executive Director of the Bergen County Bar Association, will retire. The words retirement, and Frank O’Marra, are two expressions few ever thought they would see in the same sentence. For Frank has been both glue and lubricant for one of the largest county bar associations in the state, one which grew during his tutelage to approximately 2000 members. His counsel has been sought, not just within the county, but from both county and state bar associations throughout New Jersey.
Undoubtedly, that will not stop with his retirement. Read More

Our criminal part judges continue to handle criminal matters by utilizing technology to enable the parties to appear remotely.

I have assigned our criminal part judges to handle emergent matters for the months of March and April, 2021 as set forth in the schedule listed below. Of course, this schedule is subject to any Phase changes that may be implemented.

The schedule is as follows: Read More

NOTICE TO THE BAR

COVID-19 – VIRTUAL CIVIL JURY TRIALS

The Supreme Court has authorized a two-phase approach to implementing virtual civil jury trials during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The Court’s January 7, 2021 Order provides for virtual civil jury trials to begin in five vicinages on or after February 1, 2021, with consent required during the initial implementation. As of April 5, 2021, virtual civil jury trials will expand to all counties with no requirement of consent.

The Court’s approved plan for virtual civil jury trials incorporates suggestions from various stakeholder organizations, including the New Jersey State Bar Association, New Jersey Association for Justice, New Jersey Defense Association, Trial Attorneys of New Jersey, County Bar Associations, and many individual attorneys. Read More

Closure of the courthouse was left in the discretion of Assignment Judge.  Judge Mizdol has determined that the Bergen Courthouse will NOT have a delayed opening today, December 17th, but will be closed.  There will be no Zoom proceedings today.

Staff will work on non court events remotely.

This notice is sent to clarify any differing posting on NJ Courts website.

Nurses, doctors, and other healthcare workers are providing critical frontline care as New Jersey battles a second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Accordingly, the Supreme Court has reinstated the suspension of requirements for healthcare professionals involved in responding to COVID-19 to appear for depositions or court proceedings, except for appearances and depositions (i) that are requested by the doctor, nurse, or healthcare professional; or (ii) that are for matters related to COVID-19. The Court’s December 8, 2020 Order is attached.

Questions may be directed to the Office of the Administrative Director of the Courts at (609) 376-3000.

/s/ Hon. Glenn A. Grant, J.A.D.

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: December 8, 2020

Notice and Order – COVID-19 – Healthcare Professionals Involved in Pandemic Response Not Required to Submit to Depositions or Appear for Other Court Events.pdf

 

Our Criminal-Part Judges continue to handle matters by handle criminal matters by utilizing technology to enable the parties to appear remotely.

I have assigned our criminal part judges to handle emergent matters for the months of January and February, 2021 as set forth in the schedule list below. Of course, this schedule is subject to any Phase changes that may be implemented.

Read More

The Supreme Court invites written comments on the attached proposal for virtual civil jury trials during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The Judiciary’s Post-Pandemic Planning Committee on Resuming Jury Trials developed the proposal with discussion and detailed written input from members of the Working Group on COVID-19 Jury Operations, including the New Jersey State Bar Association, the New Jersey Association for Justice, the New Jersey Defense Association, and the Division of Law in the Department of Law and Public Safety. While those stakeholders universally supported some variety of virtual civil jury trials, each made individual suggestions that are to varying extents consistent with and different than the final recommendations as attached. The Court is considering the option of virtual civil jury trials as one way of supporting comprehensive court services while in-person events remain curtailed because of the COVID-19 virus.

Please send any comments on the proposal for virtual civil jury trials in writing by Wednesday, December 16, 2020 to:

Glenn A. Grant, J.A.D. Acting Administrative Director of the Courts Comments on Proposal for Virtual Civil Jury Trials Hughes Justice Complex; P.O. Box 037 Trenton, New Jersey 08625-0037

Comments may also be submitted via email to: Comments.Mailbox@njcourts.gov

The Supreme Court will not consider comments submitted anonymously. Thus, those submitting comments by mail should include their name and address (and those submitting comments by email should include their name and email address). Comments are subject to public disclosure upon receipt.

/s/ Hon. Glenn A. Grant, J.A.D.

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: November 25, 2020

Notice – Proposal for Virtual Civil Jury Trials During COVID-19 – Publication for Comment – 11-25-20.pdf