THE SUPERIOR COURT OF PLACER COUNTY ANNOUNCES UPDATED ACTIONS IN RESPONSE TO COVID-19 VIRUS UPDATED: APRIL 8, 2020
On March 19, 2020, the Governor of California issued Executive Order N-33-20 (Governor’s Order) and ordered “all individuals living in the State of California to stay home or at their place of residence except as needed…”.
The Court initiated changes to its operations on March 9 and modified those changes on March 12, 13, 16, 17, 18, and 20, 2020. As part of the State’s critical infrastructure, the Superior Court of Placer County continues to remain open. However, in light of the ongoing State of Emergency regarding the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the Governor’s Order, the Court anticipates extending its current reduced operations status through May 8, 2020 to focus solely on those matters that impact public safety, children, and those in other vulnerable categories.
As such, effective MONDAY, APRIL 13, 2020, the Placer County Superior Court will extend its reduction to critical minimum functions through May 8, 2020. The Court will continue to focus efforts on matters involving civil liberties, restraining orders, and similar emergency matters as outlined below.
The Court’s operations will be limited to the following:
Felony and misdemeanor in-custody matters.
Felony out-of-custody matters where time has not been waived.
Felony out-of-custody arraignments, preliminary hearings, trial assignment and trials.
Felony and misdemeanor mental health cases on the mental health treatment calendars.
Felony and misdemeanor sex offense cases. All felony out-of-custody hearings not specifically noted above are postponed for four weeks. Defendants are ordered to appear on a date four weeks from their scheduled hearing. The court will provide notice. Defendants and sentenced individuals must comply with all existing orders related to their release, probation, parole, post-release community supervision, or mandatory supervision including any criminal protective orders. The court encourages defendants to contact their attorneys with questions.
Misdemeanor arraignments, including driving under the influence but excluding all other traffic-related offenses will remain as set. All other misdemeanor matters will be postponed for eight weeks. The court will provide notice.
Search and arrest warrants and petitions related to bail.
Juvenile justice and juvenile dependency matters.
Temporary Guardianships, Temporary Conservatorships, civil restraining orders including but not limited to Civil Harassment and Elder Abuse Restraining orders, petitions related to firearms, requests for unlawful detainer stays, and all requests for emergency relief. All other civil matters currently set, including small claims and unlawful detainer, will be postponed for eight weeks. The court will provide notice.
Family Law domestic violence restraining orders, adoptions, petitions for freedom from custody and control, and termination of parental rights will remain as set. All other family law matters, including family law child custody, excluding those set through the Request for Emergency Order process, child support and contempt matters will be postponed eight weeks. The court will provide notice to the parties.
The court acknowledges that it remains in the public’s interest to minimize the number of jurors summoned to the court during the current State of Emergency. As such, there are currently no jury trials set through May 8, 2020.
Per Emergency Local Rule 10.28, effective April 6, 2020, telephonic appearance is mandatory for any uncontested, non-evidentiary Civil or Family Law court event, except for those relating to custody of a minor, emergency orders, restraining/protective orders, Temporary Guardianship/Conservatorship, Adoption, or Firearms Petitions unless otherwise authorized by a judicial officer. Video appearance is mandatory for Civil Habeas Corpus (Cirby Hills) and Criminal Transfer of Probation hearings. Instructions for how to appear can be found at http://www.placer.courts.ca.gov/RAS.shtml. Parties may request a personal appearance for good cause.
In light of California Rules of Court, Emergency Rules 3 and 5, adopted by the Judicial Council of California effective April 6, 2020, the court is developing options for video appearances in certain criminal matters for all parties. The court anticipates releasing information on how to appear by video later this week. Please watch for a separate announcement. All non-traffic infraction and traffic infraction and misdemeanor hearings and trials (all cases beginning with “41-”) will be postponed to a new hearing date. This does not include hearings related to driving under the influence cases.
New citation appearance dates in traffic matters are being reviewed to ensure they have been set for hearing no less than 75 days from the date the citation was issued. If the timeline was less than 75 days, the court will set a new date. The court will provide notice to impacted parties of their new date in these situations.
The Court Clerk’s Office remains open at the Howard G. Gibson Courthouse (Roseville) and the Tahoe City Courthouse. The Court’s Juvenile Courthouse is open only when matters are set on calendar and will not otherwise be open for filings. The Court’s Historic Courthouse is closed.
The Court Clerk’s Office will only accept filings at the public counter related directly to matters noted above. Filings and payments related to matters not mentioned above should either be submitted to the court via eDelivery (http://www.placer.courts.ca.gov/online-edeliveryaccess.shtml) or mailed to the court or placed in the drop boxes at the Howard G. Gibson Courthouse and Tahoe City Courthouse. Further, the court has declared March 17 to April 10, 2020, as court holidays for the purposes of computing time under Code of Civil Procedure sections 12 and 12(a). The court is seeking an emergency order from the Chief Justice to extend the court holidays to include April 13 through May 8, 2020. If this order is granted, the court will communicate the designation of the extended judicial holiday through the publication of an Implementation Order.
The Court’s Self-Help Center has discontinued all in-person services. Please visit the Self-Help Center page on our website to schedule a telephone or video appointment. Self-Help will only assist with matters currently being heard by the court.
The court reminds members of the public that they should only come to the courthouse for official court business. If you are not a party to an action and are not filing papers with the court, the court reminds you of the Governor’s Order for Californians to remain at their residences. The court continues to strongly discourage individuals who do not have an active role in court hearings from attending court at this time. Court proceedings will remain open to the media.
Those who do attend court must follow social distancing guidelines.
If you believe you are sick or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or any other communicable disease, please contact the Court Clerk’s Office at 916-408-6000 for further information. If you have an attorney, contact your attorney before calling the Court. Defendants who have posted bail are encouraged to discuss the bail issues with their attorney and the bail bonding company.
The court will continue to monitor the situation and update this notice as circumstances warrant
View the full notice here.