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Category Archives: New Jersey Supreme Court and Administrative Office of the Courts

The Supreme Court has amended two provisions of its January 7, 2021 Order authorizing virtual civil jury trials. The Court’s attached February 1, 2021 Order clarifies that the Judiciary will provide a Samsung Galaxy tablet or similar device to jurors who require technology to participate in virtual selection or virtual trials. It also provides that the first virtual civil jury trials will be broadcast publicly subject to a brief delay to provide for review in order to prevent any inadvertent disclosure of juror identity or broadcast of juror images. A video recording will be posted on the Judiciary’s public website on the next business day following the virtual civil jury trial proceedings. Requests for real-time public access should be directed to the Vicinage Assignment Judge.

Questions regarding this notice may be directed to the Office of the Administrative Director of the Courts.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: February 1, 2021

Notice and Order – Virtual Civil Jury Trials – Amending Two Provisions of the Supreme Court’s January 7 Authorizing Order.pdf

The Supreme Court has clarified and expanded the circumstances in which a landlord may apply by Order to Show Cause for a trial in a commercial landlord/tenant (LT) matter. The Court’s February 5, 2021 Order is attached.

The Court’s February 5, 2021 Order establishes a multistep process, consistent with the existing process for residential tenancies. The Order provides that (1) a commercial landlord can file an Order to Show Cause alleging emergent circumstances, either (a) involving something other than nonpayment of rent or (b) based on nonpayment of rent that threatens the landlord’s capacity to continue their business (in the case of a pending foreclosure or tax lien); (2) the court will evaluate the application and determine whether emergent circumstances exist and a hearing should be held; and (3) if the court finds that emergent circumstances exist, the commercial tenant will be notified and a trial will be scheduled. After that trial, if the commercial landlord prevails, judgment will be entered, and a warrant of removal can be issued.

Questions on this notice may be directed to the Civil Practice Division at (609) 815-2900 x54900.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: February 5, 2021

Notice and Order – COVID-19 – Landlord_Tenant – Application for a Commercial Landlord_Tenant Trial in Certain Circumstances.pdf

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency, the Supreme Court suspended landlord/tenant (LT) trials and authorized pretrial/settlement conferences with specially trained, neutral parties to assist litigants in resolving eviction complaints. In its September 30, 2020 Order, the Court authorized three additional categories of individuals (in addition to trained Judiciary staff and others) to assist as settlors in LT matters. This memo sets forth the training requirements for these settlors.

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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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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

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

 

The Supreme Court has amended the provisions of prior Orders governing COVID-19 remote court operations. Effective immediately, consent shall not be required for Family quasi-criminal (FO) matters to be conducted remotely. Courts shall continue to consider the legitimate needs of parties, attorneys, and others in determining whether an individual matter should be conducted in person rather than remotely. The Court’s November 19, 2020 Order is attached.

Questions about this notice may be directed to the Family Practice Division at (609) 815-2900 x55350.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: November 19 , 2020

Notice – COVID-19 – Eliminating the Requirement of Consent in Order to Proceed Virtually with FO Cases – dated 11-19-20.pdf

Order – COVID-19 – Eliminating the Requirement of Consent in Order to Proceed Virtually with FO Cases – dated and effective 11-19-20.pdf

The New Jersey courts are continuing to provide comprehensive court services at all state court locations and the Administrative Office of the Courts.

As we have for the past eight months, courts at all levels are following a “remote first” approach to court proceedings and court events. Accordingly, matters that can be conducted remotely will continue to be done remotely, and certain matters that cannot be handled in a remote format will be conducted in person.

All State Courts Will Continue to Support Emergent and Critical Functions, Which May be Conducted in Person When Necessary

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The Supreme Court has immediately suspended new in-person jury trials and in-person grand jury sessions because of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Court’s November 16, 2020 Order (attached) is effective immediately and until further order.

Consistent with the Court’s October 8, 2020 Ninth Omnibus Order, virtual grand juries have been established in all counties. Existing virtual panels will continue to meet in a virtual format, and in-person panels also may be converted to convene virtually subject to the Judiciary providing technology and training as necessary to support all jurors in participating in virtual sessions. The end-dates for excludable time each have been extended by 45 days beyond the dates set in the October 8, 2020 Ninth Omnibus Order.

The New Jersey Courts will continue to operate in a primarily remote format with limited numbers of judges and court employees on-site and very few court events handled in person.

Questions about this notice 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: November 16, 2020

Notice – COVID-19 – Suspension of New In-Person Jury Trials and In-Person Grand Jury Sessions; Revised End Dates for Excludable Time – 11-16-20.pdf

Order – COVID-19 – Suspension of New In-Person Jury Trials and In-Person Grand Jury Sessions; Revised End Dates for Excludable Time – 11-16-20.pdf

This Notice is to advise that as of this week, cash payments for child support can be made at local courthouses during the days and hours listed in the schedule posted on the Judiciary’s website. The option to pay cash over the counter at the Finance Division provides a no-fee option for court users with child support obligations. Additional options for paying child support are available as described on the Department of Human Services webpage. Especially during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, timely and consistent child support payments provide critical support for children throughout New Jersey.

More information about child support and related court matters is posted on the Judiciary’s COVID-19 resource page.

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

Acting Administrative Director of the Courts

Dated: October 15, 2020

NOTICE Cash Payments for Child Support – Limited Reopening of Vicinage Finance Windows.pdf