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News & Press: Coronavirus Safety Measures

MBA - Coronavirus Safety Measures

Friday, March 13, 2020  
Posted by: Ann Sirmon
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The Mobile Bar Association remains vigilant in our efforts to be cautious and prepared as possible for the impacts of COVID-19, also know as Coronavirus. Find below the cancellations and changes we are aware of as of today. If you know of any closures or changes that may be of interest to attorneys in Mobile County, please click here. Thanks so much for your support! Please let us know if you have further questions or concerns.

 

April 2, 2020

 

Click here to view and print the travel authorization letter issued by Supreme Court of Alabama Chief Justice Parker for court employees and Alabama attorneys to be used in conjunction with appropriate ID.

 

Click here to view letter from Supreme Court of Alabama Chief Justice Parker sent to Governor Kay Ivey requesting that Alabama attorneys be considered as essential services if an statewide closure or shelter-in-place orders are issued.

 

Click here to view letter from the MBA President Skip Finkbohner sent to Governor Kay Ivey requesting that Alabama attorneys be considered as essential services if any statewide closure or shelter-in-place orders are issued.

 

Click here to view administrative order from the Supreme Court of Alabama extending orders and deadlines concerning the suspension of in-person proceedings until April 30, 2020.


In case you missed it, click here to read important and helpful information shared by the Alabama State Bar.

 

March 27, 2020

 

Click here to view the Proclamation issued by Governor Kay Ivey addressing the provision of notary services.


Click here to view the Order of the State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris, regarding the closure of certain businesses across the state.

 

March 24, 2020

Click here to view an update from Mobile County Probate court as a result of the Coronavirus.

 

March 19, 2020

Supreme Court of Alabama Oral Arguments - POSTPONED
Due to the Coronavirus, and the health and safety of the community, the Supreme Court of Alabama Oral Argument scheduled for Wednesday, May 6, 2020, has been POSTPONED for the Fall 2020. We will let you know once the new date has been confirmed.

Law Day Activities

Due to the Coronavirus, we have canceled our Middle School Essay Contest and not accepting nominations for the 2020 Liberty Bell Award. We are unsure of the Law Day Help Line scheduled for Tuesday, May 12th. We will keep you posted.

 

Notice to Workers' Compensation Section Members

Click here to view the WC Ombudsman Memo

Click here to view Supreme Court of Alabama Administrative Order concerning Workers' Compensation Cases

 

March 18, 2020 at 3:45 pm

Click here to view an update regarding Court operations from Chief U.S. District Judge Kristi K. Dubose, U.S. District Court Southern District of Alabama.

 

March 17, 2020 at 10:00 am

Notice to Social Security Section members -

Click here to view a release from the Social Security Administration.

It states:
If you have a hearing scheduled, we will call you to discuss alternatives for continuing with your hearing, including offering a telephonic hearing. Our call may come from a PRIVATE number and not from a U.S. Government phone.

The Social Security Section had planned an upcoming CLE, due to the national emergency concerning the coronavirus, the meeting has been put aside until we get through the crisis.

 

March 17, 2020 at 9:30 am

Notice to Bankruptcy Section members - The Bankruptcy Section CLE scheduled for Tuesday, March 31, 2020, has been rescheduled. The date to be determined at a later time. We will keep you posted on the new date.

 

March 16, 2020 at 5:22 pm

Notice from Judge George N. Hardesty, Jr., Presiding District Court Judge

This ORDER pertains to the District Court Civil Docket Cases, that is, to District Civil, Small Claims, and Landlord-Tenant Cases.

The Supreme Court has issued an  ORDER that all Courts have no in-person Court proceedings. The Presiding Judge of our Circuit has issued a similar  ORDER with some Modifications. We are very concerned about the health and safety of everyone due to the outbreak of the COVID-19/Coronavirus. Therefore, under the  ORDERS of the Supreme Court and Circuit Court, we are hereby canceling all District Civil, Small Claims, and Landlord-Tenant Dockets until further notice.  You will be notified of a reset date by mail or E-Notice when the court resumes normal dockets.

 

March 16, 2020 at 5:13 pm

Notice from Judge George N. Hardesty, Jr., Presiding District Court Judge

Notice regarding pending Criminal, that is, District Court Criminal (DC) and District Court Traffic (TR), cases.  The action that the Judges of the District Court are taking is in response to the ORDER of the Alabama Supreme Court and the ORDER of the Circuit Court of the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit in relation to our response to Court proceedings in light of the Coronavirus outbreak.

 

At this point in time, the District Court has made the decision to suspend from March 17, 2020, through April 16, 2020, any court hearings in criminal and traffic cases in which the Defendant is  NOT currently incarcerated. If an extension should be needed beyond this time frame, you will be notified as soon as possible.

 

Attorneys are instructed to be present in District Court for criminal and traffic cases ONLY if the Defendant they are representing is  in Jail. These proceedings will be handled by the Duty Judge assigned to that particular day and the attorneys should report to that particular Judge’s Courtroom. Any cases in which the the Defendant has made bond will be reset to a date at the discretion of each of the District Court Judges. The attorney should receive notice of the reset court date on said cases by email; Defendants without an attorney should receive notice of the reset court date by regular mail.

 

If there are any questions regarding case settings, attorneys and the public may contact the District Court Clerk’s Office at (251) 574-8511.

 

March 16, 2020 at 1:06 pm

Click here to view order on hearings at US Bankruptcy Court.

 

March 16, 2020 at 11:26 am

Click here to view order from Mobile Municipal Court.

 

March 16, 2020 at 9:32 am

Click here to view order for the Baldwin County Probate Court.

 

March 16, 2020

The United States District Court Southern District of Alabama is following recommended guidelines from public health officials and preparedness guidance from the AO. Click here for more information and to view their procedures.

 

March 15, 2020

Click here to view the revised order from the Supreme Court of Alabama.

 

March 14, 2020 at 7:25 pm

Click here to view operations for the Baldwin County Courthouse.


March 14, 2020 at 4:07 pm

Click here to view the updated order from Circuit Court of Mobile County, Alabama.


March 14, 2020 at 9:30 am

IMPORTANT NOTICE TO ALL LAWYERS AND CITIZENS WITH HEARINGS SCHEDULED IN MOBILE COUNTY PROBATE COURT


On March 13, 2020, the Alabama Supreme Court SUSPENDED most hearings in most judicial matters  in the Alabama state judicial system  through April 16, 2020.  The exceptions relating to liberty deprivation (such as involuntary mental health commitment proceedings)  and emergency protective proceedings (such as guardianship and conservatorship cases).  The Supreme Court's Order is attached.  EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY - ANY cause scheduled for hearing in the Mobile County Probate Court from March 14, 2020 through April 16, 2020 EXCEPT AS INDICATED BELOW - is CONTINUED AND WILL BE RESET TO A LATER DATE.  The Court will notify all lawyers and parties of new hearing dates at a later time.  ALL CURRENTLY SCHEDULED INVOLUNTARY MENTAL HEALTH COMMITMENT PROCEEDINGS AND ALL EMERGENCY PROTECTIVE PROCEEDINGS (GUARDIANSHIP AND CONSERVATORSHIP CASES) REMAIN SCHEDULED AS IS SUBJECT TO THE CORONAVIRUS GUIDELINES ISSUED BY THE COURT ON MARCH 13, 2020.

 

March 13, 2020 after 5:00 pm

Click here to view the full order from the Supreme Court of Alabama suspending all in-person proceedings.

 

March 13, 2020 at 5:00 pm

Click here to view updated measures from Circuit Court of Mobile County, Alabama.

 

March 13, 2020 at 2:13 pm

Click here to view measures being taken by Mobile County Probate Court related to the Coronavirus.

MBA Grievance Committee Meeting scheduled for Thursday, March 26, 2020 has been CANCELLED.

Federal Civil Discourse Program with the  MBA Civil Practice - Federal Court Section  slated for Friday, March 20, 2020 has been rescheduled. The date to be determined for a later date.

 

March 13, 2020 at 10:35 am 

Standing Order from Circuit Court of Mobile County, Alabama
Dated March 12, 2020

On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization announced that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is officially a global pandemic.  Although much is still unknown about this virus, by all accounts it is extremely contagious and has a mortality rate much higher than general influenza viruses.  To date, only twenty COVID-19 diagnostic tests have been performed in the entire State of Alabama.  Consequently, there is little to no information available to determine the spread of this virus in Mobile County or across the State.  For the safety of our citizens, to protect them from the risks and unknowns associated with COVID-19, the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit is suspending all jury trials that are scheduled for March and April of 2020.  All persons who have been summoned for jury duty during these months are being advised to ignore the previously-issued summons.  The affected trials will be rescheduled by the circuit judges assigned to the cases.  At this time, trials scheduled for May and June are expected to proceed. However, if that changes, the Court will issue an appropriate advisory. 

Please note that, at this point, the courthouse will remain open for all business other than jury trials.  If that status changes, the Court will issue an advisory order. 

 

Upcoming Mobile Bar Association Meetings

In following with the standing order from the Circuit Court of Mobile County, Alabama and the need for social distancing, the Mobile Bar Association's upcoming events are as follows:

Coffee with the Court - March 19, 2020 - Has been rescheduled for May. The date is to be determined.

March Membership Meeting - March 20, 2020 - Has been CANCELLED.

 

South Alabama Volunteer Lawyers Program

The South Alabama Volunteer Lawyers Program (SAVLP) has suspended all activities at the Courthouse, Franklin Primary and Prodisee Pantry through the end of March. SAVLP will handle client intake/application by phone at 251.438-1102 or visit their website at www.savlp.org for updates and other ways to apply for services.

 

Alabama State Bar

The Alabama State Bar has developed a landing page on their website with the latest information and changes in protocol that may impact you. The page will be updated frequently to keep you informed of the status of meetings, events and changes to bar services. 

Click Here to view the Alabama State Bar Coronavirus web page.

If you learn of closures to your county's courthouse or any other changes that may be of interest to attorneys statewide, you can notify the Alabama State Bar by  click here.