Courts adjust for COVID-19

The Dutchess County Family Court facility.

NEW YORK – State Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Marks has updated the court protocols amidst what he calls the “coronavirus public health emergency in New York State.”

All non-essential functions of the courts will be postponed until further notice.  Current civil and criminal trials will continue to conclusion.  No new criminal or civil trials will commence until further notice.

Outside of New York City, special court parts will be established in individual jurisdictions where essential matters will be consolidated.  Supreme Court cases will continue to handle essential applications including guardianships, civil commitments, and Mental Hygiene Law matters.

In county courts where felony cases are handled, only cases where the defendant is in custody will be proceeding.  If the alleged felon is not in custody, the case will be adjourned until further notice.

Town and village justice courts will only be handling arraignments and other essential applications, including applications for orders of protection.

Family court will be handling only issues related to child protection proceedings, juvenile delinquency, family offenses, and support orders.

Courts are being condensed into central locations until further notice.  In the Third Judicial District which includes Sullivan, Columbia, and Greene counties, cases will be handled in the following locations:

In Columbia County, including the City of Hudson Court, all cases will be handled at the Columbia County Courthouse in Hudson.

In Greene County, all cases are being moved to the Greene County Courthouse in Catskill.

In Sullivan, all cases, including Family Court are being moved to the Sullivan County Courthouse in Monticello.

In the Ninth Judicial District which encompasses Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, Putnam, and Westchester Counties, the cases are being moved to the following:

Dutchess County cases including the City of Poughkeepsie and City of Beacon courts are being heard at Dutchess County Family Court in Poughkeepsie.

Dutchess County Courthouse

In Orange County, all cases including those from Middletown, Newburgh, and Port Jervis City Courts are moved to the Orange County Courthouse in Goshen.

All Putnam County cases are moving to the Putnam County Courthouse in Carmel.

Cases in Rockland County courts are moving to the Rockland County Courthouse.

Westchester cases, including the city courts of Mount Vernon, New Rochelle, Peekskill, Rye, White Plains, and Yonkers are all moving to Westchester Supreme Court in White Plains.

Non-judicial employees have been told to check with their supervisors for their work assignments.  Those not required to work are off as of Tuesday, March 17, 2020, until further notice.

The State Unified Court System is working to establish an emergency telephone number, available 24 hours a day to field questions from the public.

Additionally, the Commissioner of Jurors for New York State has updated the jury duty protocols as a result of COVID-19.

Office of the Dutchess County Commissioner of Jurors

If you have received a jury duty summons beginning Monday and until further notice, your service has been suspended.  The commissioner will provide another summons at a future date.

If you are currently serving on a jury, including a grand jury for a criminal matter, or civil case, you are required to appear and continue service.

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