UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CA SUSPENSION OF PERSONAL APPEARANCES AND
IN-PERSON FILING IN CIVIL CASES DURING THE COVID-19 PUBLIC EMERGENCY
This Order amends paragraph 4 of Order of the Chief Judge No. 18 and is predicated on the facts set forth there.
4A. Except for convening jury trials, individual district judges will retain discretion in criminal cases, on a case by case basis, to schedule criminal proceedings, hold hearings, conferences, and bench trials, and otherwise take such actions as may be lawful and appropriate to ensure the fairness of the proceedings and preserve the rights of the parties.
4B. In civil cases, the personal appearance of counsel, parties, witnesses, or other non-court personnel at proceedings, hearings, or conferences is excused, unless they are ordered to appear in person by a judicial officer after the date this Order is signed. With the exception of jury trials, judges will retain discretion to schedule and hold proceedings, hearings, and conferences telephonically or by video conferencing, as permitted by law.
4C. In civil cases, documents are not to be filed in person at the courthouse as permitted by Civil L.R. 77 .1. Counsel and parties should not come to the courthouse or send others to the courthouse to file or submit documents that can be mailed or filed electronically. In the case of filings that cannot be accomplished except in person, counsel or parties should deposit documents to be filed in the Clerk’s office’s after-hours drop-off box. Unless payment is made online or the party is moving to proceed in forma pauperis, a check or money order to cover any applicable filing fees should accompany the documents. The Clerk retains the discretion to move the location of the drop-off box. This prohibition renders the Clerk’s office inaccessible for purposes of Fed. R. Civ. P. 6(a)(3). Individual judicial officers may order the submission of documents by other means, where appropriate and permitted.
4D. Civil L.R. 5.4 requires compliance with this District’s Electronic Case Filing Policies and Procedures Manual. Under section 2(e) of the Manual, courtesy copies of filings longer than 20 pages must be delivered to the Clerk’s office or the judge’s chambers. Except as directed by an individual judicial officer, and except in situations where the judge’s immediate attention is anticipated or desired, this requirement is suspended as to civil cases until April 16, 2020, unless extended by the Court.
View the full order here.