The Supreme Court of North Carolina issued an order today extending all appellate court deadlines that fall between March 27 – April 30, 2020 for 60 days. In addition, the order encourages electronic filing and credits back secure-leave scheduled in April and May 2020.
“We have reached a critical moment in our efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 and we must take every opportunity to flatten the curve,” said Chief Justice Beasley. “We encourage attorneys to adhere to existing timelines where possible to help us lessen the backlog that will be created by this extension, but most importantly, we want attorneys and their clients to stay safe during this challenging time.”
Today’s order follows several emergency steps taken by the Chief Justice to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. On March 13, Chief Justice Beasley 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.
Chief Justice Beasley issued her third emergency step on March 19, 2020, when she issued an order that extended deadlines in the trial courts until April 17, 2020.
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.