Federal Courts Signal Return to In Person Court Proceedings

by: Joseph Grather
12 May 2023

Another sign that the COVID-19 / SARS-2 pandemic is over – Reuters reported yesterday that the federal judiciary would be ending its remote access mandates come September 2023.

I clearly remember when it started, the signs pasted on retail business doors – CLOSED – Will Re-open in Two Weeks. That was March 20, 2020.  Over three years ago!  I was representing a property owner in a hotly contested condemnation valuation case in the United States District Court from December 2020 until mid-2022. I never once stepped foot in the federal Courthouse although I “appeared” before the District Court Judge and assigned Magistrate probably a dozen times before the case was resolved by consent order for judgment fixing just compensation.

I wrote a piece in the midst of the pandemic about missing appearing in Court in person.  The sentiment still rings true today, but I must admit “zooming” to Camden for a ten-minute case management conference beats the four-hour roundtrip drive every time.