- posted: Apr. 16, 2020
Jackson County, Missouri encompasses the cities of Kansas City and Indepence, Missouri. We have not conducted any high volume collection dockets since early March. Cases that were continued to May are either going to be rescheduled to June or conducted by video or telephonic conference. And the court placed a stay on writs to evict and on the issuance of a writ of replevin. Our court just started using WebEx to conduct hearings. bench trials and case management conferences. But it is unclear if it will be expanded to high volume collection dockets.
Today our presiding judge extended a previous Administrative Order that was set to expire April 17th to May 15, 2020. Restricting access to court buildings, encouraging the use of video and teleconferencing and exending the suspension of Issuance and Enforcement of Writs of Restitution, Writs of Replevin, Writs of Attachment, Writs of Garnishment and any other Writs of Execution.
Here are the highlights:
- Judges presiding over a civil or domestic case or matter may exercise their discretion to waive, for good cause shown, any filing deadlines or time limitations set though Missouri’s e-filing system or by court order, local rule, or Missouri Supreme Court Rules 41 through 81. This authorization doesnot apply to any deadline or time limitations set by statute or constitutional provision;
- In-person hearings should be conducted only as an absolute last resort when all other alternative methods to proceed with the hearing have failed;
- All proceedings, hearings and conferences shall be conducted by telephone, polycom, videoconferencing, or any other method that does not require the physical presence of persons in Court Buildings;
- All jury trials scheduled through May 31, 2020 are continued and will be rescheduled to a later date;
- Delay issuing writs of restitution, writs of replevin, writs of attachment, writs of garnishment and any other writ of execution not specified in this Order up through and including the end of the business day on Monday, May 18, 2020, and the Director of Civil Process is directed to refrain from executing any pending writs of restitution, writs of replevin, writs of attachment, writs of garnishment and any other writ of execution not otherwise specified in this Order up through and including that same date.
- The Missouri Supreme Court has stated that in-person hearings or conferences may be conducted for the below listed proceedings. However, in-person proceeding, hearing or conference shall only be held in limited and extreme circumstances and based on a determination that alternative methods for conducting hearings cannot occur, including a determination by the Judicial Officer presiding over any such proceedings that it is not possible for such proceedings, hearings or conferences to be conducted by telephone, teleconference, polycom, videoconferencing, or any other method that does not require the physical presence of persons in Court Buildings. In-person hearings should be conducted only as an absolute last resort when all other alternative methods to proceed with the hearing have failed:
(a) Proceedings necessary to protect the constitutional rights of criminal defendants, including the right to a speedy trial, and the rights afforded under section 544.676.3;
(b) Proceedings pursuant to chapters 210 and 211 pertaining to juvenile delinquency and abuse, neglect, and termination of parental rights;
(c) Proceedings pursuant to chapter 453 pertaining to adoption;
(d) Proceedings in which civil or criminal jury trials are already in progress as of March 16, 2020;
(e) Proceedings pursuant to chapter 455 pertaining to orders of protection;
(f) Proceedings related to emergency child custody orders;
(g) Proceedings related to petitions for temporary restraining orders or other forms of temporary injunctive relief;
(h) Proceedings related to emergency mental health orders;
(i) Proceedings pursuant to Chapter 475 for emergency guardianship or conservatorship;
(j) Proceedings directly related to the COVID-19 public health emergency;
(k) Oral arguments regarding time-sensitive matters; (l) Other exceptions approved by the Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court.
This extension may not make much difference, as many creditors have instructed their counsel not to take any action during this pandemic. When we do resume, there is no doubt the dockets will be huge to process the backlog.