Chief Justice Cheri Beasley issued an order today extending filing deadlines and further curtailing other court processes. The order states that documents due to be filed from March 16 to April 17 will be deemed timely filed if received before the close of business on April 17, 2020, and that any actions required to be done during that time can also be postponed until April 17, 2020. This decision comes as the court system continues work to curtail operations in light of the growing exigent circumstances related to the spread of COVID-19.
“We’re working to slow the spread of infection and one of the ways we can do that is to suspend routine filings and other court-related deadlines,” said Chief Justice Beasley. “We want attorneys and people representing themselves in court to stay home and out of the courthouse to the fullest extent possible.”
This order does not apply to documents and papers due to be filed or acts due to be done in the appellate courts.
This is the third emergency step taken by Chief Justice Beasley because of coronavirus health concerns. On March 13, she issued two emergency directives postponing most cases in superior and district courts for 30 days and instructing local officials to take steps to limit the risk of exposure in courthouses.
On March 15, 2020, Chief Justice Beasley issued a memo providing guidance to local judges, clerks, and district attorneys as they worked to implement earlier directives. The memo allowed for the public and court personnel to practice social distancing and other preventative measures recommended by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the Center for Disease Control.
In light of this rapidly evolving public health situation, the Judicial Branch will provide continuously updated information on our website, NCcourts.gov. The public is encouraged to visit NCcourts.gov as a first resort to determine if a question can be answered without calling the local courthouse. The public may also visit the Judicial Branch Facebook page and Twitter account to access information related to the coronavirus health concern.
Online court services are available for handling some court business, including citation services, paying your ticket, court payments, signing up for court date notifications and reminders, eFiling court documents for certain courts and case types, and more.