Hi, How Can We Help You?
  • Address: 15 Bergen St, Hackensack, NJ
  • Phone: (201) 488-0032
  • Email Address: info@bergenbar.org

Category Archives: Criminal

The Supreme Court has issued its Seventh Omnibus Order on Court Operations and Legal Practice during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. A copy of the Order is attached.

This July 24, 2020 Seventh Omnibus Order continues certain adjustments necessitated during the COVID-19 period, including the prioritization of remote proceedings and permission for electronic signatures, remote depositions, and electronic service on the State of New Jersey. It also concludes certain blanket suspensions and extensions (including as to discovery involving experts, affidavits of merit, relaxation of Rule 4:86 regarding guardianships of incapacitated persons, and depositions and appearances by medical professionals) while permitting extensions based on the facts and circumstances of an individual case.

The July 24, 2020 Seventh Omnibus Order includes the following key provisions:

  • Jury Trials. Authorizing new jury selections and new jury trials starting on or after September 21, 2020, with selections to be conducted in a primarily virtual format and trials to be conducted in person with social distancing, consistent with the Court’s July 22, 2020 Order;
  • Grand Jury. Providing for the virtual selection of new grand jury panels on or after September 21, 2020;
  • Criminal. Continuing excludable time provisions through September 20, 2020;
  • Special Civil Part. Clarifying that Special Civil Part (DC) and Small Claims (SC) proceedings including trials can be conducted remotely with or without consent;
  • Family – Quasi-Criminal. Providing that Family quasi-criminal (FO) trials shall proceed remotely only with the consent of the parties, and in the absence of consent such matters will proceed in person;
  • Family – Domestic Violence. Amending Phase 2 of the Judiciary’s Post Pandemic Plan to allow applicants seeking a domestic violence restraining order to appear at court without an appointment; and
  • Municipal Courts. Confirming that Municipal Court sessions will be conducted primarily using remote technologies, although in limited circumstances in-person sessions may be conducted, including for complex matters such as DWI trials and certain cases involving a consequence of magnitude.

Questions about this notice or the Court’s Seventh Omnibus Order may be directed to the Office of the Administrative at the Courts at (609) 376-3000.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: July 24, 2020

NOTICE Seventh Omnibus Order on Court Operations and Legal Practice – Concluding Certain General Extensions; Continuing Individualized Adjustments.pdf

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 month of August as set forth in the schedule listed below.  Of course, this schedule is subject to any Phase 3 changes that may be implemented.

The schedule is as follows:

August

3,4 – Judge Kazlau/Judge Wilcox/ Judge Steele

5,6 – Judge Foti/Judge Bachmann/Judge Steele

7 – Judge Vinci/Judge Steele

10 – Judge Catuogno/Judge Wilcox/Judge Sattely

11,12 – Judge Catuogno/Judge McGrogan/Judge Sattely

13,14 – Judge Kazlau/Judge Wilcox/Judge Sattely

17,18 – Judge Foti / Judge Bachmann / Judge Sattely

19,20 – Judge Vinci / Judge Sattely

21,24 – Judge Catuogno / Judge McGrogan / Judge Sattely

25,26 – Judge Kazlau / Judge Wilcox / Judge Sattely

27,28 – Judge Foti / Judge Bachmann

The Full Order and Notice is attached below for your convenience.

The Supreme Court has authorized the incremental resumption of new Civil and Criminal jury trials, which have been suspended for more than four months because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Attached to this notice are the Court’s July 22, 2020 Order and the Report on Resuming Jury Trials.

Atlantic/Cape May, Bergen, and Cumberland/Gloucester/Salem will be the first Vicinages to resume certain jury trials, beginning with Criminal trials involving a single detained defendant. Over the coming months, trials will gradually resume in all counties and will expand to include Civil as well as Criminal cases.

Overview

Read More

The Supreme Court by Order dated June 30, 2020 has relaxed Rule 1 :40-12(b) (“Mediator Training Requirements”) to temporarily allow mediator training to be conducted virtually (by video) rather than only in an in-person classroom format. The Court’s June 30, 2020 Order is attached.

Rule 1 :40-12(b) establishes mediator training requirements, including the 18-hour basic mediation training and an additional 22 hours (for a total of 40 hours) for mediators on the family roster and the civil, general equity, and probate roster. The rule requires “classroom” courses for the basic and specialized mediation and complementary dispute resolution (CDR) trainings, which courses historically have been conducted in person.

In-person trainings have been suspended during the COVID-19 crisis based on public health requirements. Over the past several months, the Judiciary has converted classroom-based curricula to support virtual mediation and CDR courses, including by using virtual breakout rooms to enable small groups to engage in interactive exercises and role plays. The Court’s June 30, 2020 Order will enable mediator trainings to resume in a virtual format during the COVID-19 crisis while social distancing requirements restrict in-person gatherings.

Questions on this notice should be directed to Kathleen Gaskill, Manager of CDR and Volunteer Programs, at Kathleen.Gaskill@njcourts.gov.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: July 7, 2020

NOTICE: Mediator Training to be Conducted Virtually.pdf

Our Bergen County Criminal Part Judges are handling Criminal matters by utilizing technology to enable the parties to appear remotely.  In addition, our Criminal Part judges are assigned to handle emergent matters for the month of July. Of course, this schedule is subject to change if the Courthouse opens to the public sooner. The schedule is as follows:

 

JULY

  • 1,2                         Judge Foti/Judge Bachmann
  • 3                            Holiday
  • 6,7                         Judge Vinci/Judge Sattely
  • 8,9                         Judge Catuogno/Judge McGrogan
  • 10,13                     Judge Kazlau /Judge Wilcox
  • 14,15                     Judge Foti/Judge Bachmann
  • 16,17                     Judge Vinci/Judge Sattely
  • 20,21                     Judge Catuogno/Judge McGrogan
  • 22,23                     Judge Kazlau/Judge Wilcox
  • 24,27                     Judge Foti/Judge Bachmann
  • 28,29                     Judge Vinci/Judge Sattely
  • 30,31                     Judge Catuogno/Judge McGrogan

The Supreme Court by Orders dated May 14, 2020 and June 4, 2020 authorized a pilot program for virtual grand jury sessions, starting in Bergen and Mercer Counties. By Order dated June 9, 2020, the Court expanded that pilot program to also permit selection (empanelment) of grand juries in a virtual format.

In both pilot counties, matters have been presented and indictments returned. Based on the results in the two pilot counties, the Division of Criminal Justice in the Department of Law and Public Safety expressed interest in conducting State Grand Jury proceedings in a virtual format. Accordingly, the Court has authorized the expansion of the virtual grand jury pilot program to enable existing State Grand Jury panels to reconvene in a virtual format.

Technology funded by the Attorney General and configured and administered by the Judiciary will be supplied to State grand jurors where necessary to enable participation in the virtual grand jury proceeding.

The Court’s June 25, 2020 Order is attached.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: June 25, 2020

NOTICE Virtual Grand Jury Pilot Program – Expansion to State Grand Jury.pdf

The Supreme Court has issued its Fifth Omnibus Order on Court Operations and Legal Practice during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. A copy of the Order is attached.

This June 25, 2020 Fifth Omnibus Order follows the format of the earlier Omnibus Orders. It continues certain suspensions and extensions through July 12, 2020 and affirms that other provisions remain in full force and effect.

The Fifth Omnibus Order concludes the restrictions on the Office of Foreclosure as established in earlier Omnibus Orders, meaning that in addition to non-dispositive motions (e.g., motions to substitute plaintiff, motions to enter default, motions for surplus funds and motions to correct defendant), the Office of Foreclosure now may recommend judgments or dispositive motions received on or after March 1, 2020.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues and based on developments in the coming weeks, the Court will revisit the provisions of the Fifth Omnibus Order and make adjustments as appropriate.

Questions about this notice or the Court’s Fifth Omnibus Order 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: June 25, 2020

NOTICE Fifth Omnibus Order on Court Operations and Legal Practice.pdf

NOTICE TO THE BAR

The Supreme Court by Orders dated May 14, 2020 and June 4, 2020 authorized a pilot program for virtual grand jury sessions, starting in Bergen and Mercer Counties.

By Order dated dated June 9, 2020, the Court expanded that pilot program to also permit selection (empanelment) of grand juries in a virtual format, either in the initial pilot counties or in other counties. To bridge the digital divide, technology configured and administered by the Judiciary will be supplied to grand jurors where necessary to enable participation in the virtual selection using a smartphone or other technology with camera functionality, although a larger-screen device must be used for grand jury sessions.

The Court’s June 9, 2020 Order is attached.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: June 12, 2020

Virtual Grand Jury Pilot Program – Expansion to Grand Jury Selection (In Addition to Sessions).pdf

NOTICE TO THE BAR

The Supreme Court today issued its Fourth Omnibus Order on Court Operations and Legal Practice in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. A copy of the Order is attached.

This June 11, 2020 Fourth Omnibus Order follows the format of the May 28, 2020 Third Omnibus Order. It continues certain suspensions and extensions through June 28, 2020 and affirms that other provisions remain in full force and effect. It also provides updated direction in the following areas:

  • Jury Trials. Continuing the suspension of new jury trials and providing that ongoing jury trials suspended during COVID-19 may resume consistent with public health precautions with the consent of all parties;
  • Grand Jury. Extending the suspension of in-person grand jury selection and sessions and affirming that grand juries may convene remotely consistent with the Pilot Program for Virtual Grand Juries, which currently is operating in Bergen and Mercer Counties;
  • Landlord/Tenant. Providing as to landlord/tenant proceedings that (i) lockouts of residential tenants (evictions) continue to be suspended in accordance with Executive Order 106 (March 19, 2020); (ii) landlord/tenant complaints may continue to be filed with the courts, and new complaints will include an email address for the landlord and to the extent available an email address for the tenant; (iii) the court will schedule conferences, including to obtain or confirm contact information from the parties and conduct settlement negotiations in an effort to resolve matters; and (iv) trials continue to be suspended until further notice;
  • Tax Court. Affirming provisions of prior orders as to the extension of all filing deadlines for state tax controversies while vacating provisions as to local property tax appeals; and
  • Trial Court Filing Deadlines. Restating that in the computation of time periods under the Rules of Court and under any statute of limitations for matters in all trial divisions of the Superior Court, the period from March 16, 2020 through May 10, 2020 will not be included in calculating those trial court filing deadlines.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues and based on developments in the coming weeks, the Court will revisit the provisions of the Fourth Omnibus Order and make adjustments as appropriate.

Questions about this notice or the Court’s Fourth Omnibus Order 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: June 11, 2020

Fourth Omnibus Order on Court Operations and Legal Practice.pdf

 

NOTICE TO THE BAR

The Supreme Court has approved the first part of the New Jersey Courts Post-Pandemic Plan (Plan) for transitioning from fully remote court operations (Phase 1) to the gradual return to courthouse and court facilities (Phase 2). The New Jersey courts will begin the incremental implementation of Phase 2 starting on Monday, June 22, 2020.

The Judiciary developed the comprehensive plan for safely resuming in-person court services in collaboration with Judiciary stakeholders, including representatives and Families, as well as the Attorney General, Public Defender, Sheriff Association, Warden Association, State Bar Association, and Legal Services, as well as judges and court staff.

The Plan memorializes our current Phase 1 status and the factors considered in determining to proceed to Phase 2. Iy outlines the precautions that have been and will be implemented before our buildings are opened for any in-person proceedings, including requirements to wear masks in non-private areas and to maintain social distancing as set forth in the Court’s June 9, 2020 Order. As noted, the Plan also lists those events that in Phase 2 will continue to be conducted remotely and those events that may, consistent with Supreme Court guidance, be conducted onsite.

The Plan for moving forward to Phase 2 is posted on the New Jersey courts public website (njcourts. gov).

As we have throughout the COVID-19 public health emergency, the Judiciary will continue to provide information and guidance to attorneys, litigants, and members of the Public regarding the status of court facilities and operations. We will issue additional information, including on the subsequent transitions to Phase 3 and 4, as soon as available.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: June 10, 2020

Notice – NJ Courts Post-Pandemic Plan – Transition from Phase 1 to Phase 2 – Notice Dated 06-10-20.pdf

NJ Courts Post Pandemic Plan Powerpoint Slides – Transition from Phase 1 to Phase 2 – As Issued 06-10-20.pdf

1 2 3 6