NEWS  

1101 Market Street, 11th Floor • Philadelphia, PA 19107

Phone: 215-238-6300 • Fax: 215-238-1267 • www.philadelphiabar.org

March 06, 2020

Philadelphia Bar Association Coronavirus Response

Updated November 30, 2020

Recent Updates

  • November 30, 2020 – Phila. Administrative Judge Shirdan-Harris and Supervising Judge Anders have issued an Order extending the Stay of Litigation Involving SEPTA through January 15, 2021. See Order for details.
  • November 30, 2020 – Phila Courts have announced plans to resume in-person jury trials starting January 21, subject to public health guidance, in the Arbitration Appeal, Major Jury, Mass Tort and Commerce programs.
  • November 17, 2020: Phila. Court of Common Pleas Criminal Division Supervising Judge Tucker has announced
    that due to new city restrictions, all criminal jury trials are suspended effective immediately, and
    that bench trials will proceed as scheduled.
  • November 16, 2020, Municipal Court Civil Division issues Notice of Right to Appear in Person, via Zoom
    or Telephonically. The
    Notice
    sets protocols and provides instructions for parties participating in Zoom and telephonic court proceedings.
  • November 6, 2020 - Philadelphia Municipal Court President Judge Patrick Dugan has issued an Order halting service of Writs of Possession and Alias Writs of Possession through December 31, except for
    good cause shown as detailed in the Order.
  • November 4, 2020 – Philadelphia Administrative Judge Shirdan-Harris and Supervising Judges Anders and
    Glazer have issued Protocol
    for Contested Discovery Motions
    During the Judicial Emergency.
  • October 26, 2020 – Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas President Judge Fox has issued Administrative
    Order 63 of 2020
    postponing November and December Sheriff’s Tax Sales to January and February, respectively, and Administrative
    Order 64 of 2020
    postponing the December Sheriff’s Mortgage Foreclosure Sale to February.
  • October 22, 2020 – Philadelphia Administrative Judge Allen and Supervising Judge Shirdan-Harris have
    announced new protocol for non-jury trials in the Arbitration Appeal and Major Non-Jury programs. See
    the Notice
    to the Bar
    and Trial
    Pool List
    for details.
  • October 5, 2020 – Philadelphia Municipal Court President Judge Dugan has issued an Amended
    Administrative Order
    extending the ban on service of alias writs of possession in residential cases until November 8, 2020.
  • September 25, 2020 – Administrative Judge Allen and Supervising Judge Shirdan-Harris have issued a Notice
    to the Bar
    setting the protocol beginning October 5 for non-jury trials during the Judicial Emergency. The Notice includes a list
    of matters
    to be scheduled for trial.
  • September 24, 2020 – Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas President Judge Fox has issued a series of Administrative
    Orders
    further postponing upcoming Sheriff’s Mortgage Foreclosure and Tax Sales. See orders for details:
  • September 22, 2020 – Philadelphia Municipal Court President Judge Dugan has issued an Amended
    Administrative Order
    extending the ban on service of alias writs of possession in residential cases until October 7, 2020.
  • September 17, 2020 - Philadelphia Administrative Judge Allen and Supervising Judges Shirdan-Harris have
    issued an Order regarding the implementation of the Center for Disease Control’s residential eviction moratorium in
    cases filed in the Trial Division of the Court of Common Pleas, and a new filing requirement for a
    "Plaintiff's Affidavit in Connection with The CDC Order and Temporary Halt in Evictions to Prevent
    further Spread of Covid-19" ("Affidavit").
  • September 16, 2020 - Philadelphia Administrative Judge Allen and Supervising Judges Shirdan-Harris have
    issued a Notice
    to the Bar
    setting the protocol for the resumption of Arbitration Hearings during COVID-19 judicial emergency.
  • September 14, 2020 - Philadelphia Administrative Judge Allen and Supervising Judges Shirdan-Harris and
    Glazer have issued a Notice
    to the Bar
    setting the protocol for Settlement Conferences in Major Jury, Arbitration Appeal and Non-Jury Cases.
  • September 11, 2020 – Philadelphia Administrative Judge Allen and Supervising Judges Shirdan-Harris and
    Glazer have issued a Notice
    to the Bar
    setting the protocol for Discovery Motions filed after September 7.
  • September 11, 2020 – The Philadelphia Courts have set a Policy
    for Public Access to Judicial Proceedings
    during the COVID-19 pandemic, which includes a policy for livestreaming.
  • September 9, 2020 - Philadelphia Municipal Court President Judge Dugan has issued an Order directing the Landlord-Tenant Officer to not serve any alias writs of possession in residential cases
    until September 23, 2020. Until that date, service of writs of possession will be permitted on a limited
    basis, along with notice of the September 1 CDC Order and the Declaration Form.
  • September 4, 2020 – The First Judicial District has provided the Declaration
    Form
    which must be completed by eligible tenants and presented to their landlords in order to qualify under the Center for Disease Control’s recent Agency
    Order
    placing a moratorium through the end of the year on evictions of eligible tenants for nonpayment of rent.
  • September 2, 2020 - Philadelphia Administrative Judge Jacqueline Allen and Supervising Judge
    Shirdan-Harris issued a Notice
    to the Bar
    regarding protocols for non-jury trials during the COVID-19 Judicial Emergency.
  • September 2, 2020 – The U.S. Center for Disease Control has issued an Agency
    Order
    placing a moratorium on eviction of tenants who meet certain qualifications and who are impacted by the pandemic.

Montgomery County Emergency Procedures

Coronavirus Response

The Philadelphia Bar Association is following the recent directives of Governor Wolf and Mayor Kenney to close all
non-essential businesses by temporarily closing our physical office at 1101 Market Street for the foreseeable
future. The recent outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) is being closely monitored by health organizations and
governments worldwide.

Although our office is closed, the Philadelphia Bar Association as an entity is open and working
remotely. Our staff is ready and available to continue to service our members. Please feel free to
contact staff by email or phone, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

All scheduled meetings will now take place via conference call. Please refer to your meeting
announcement for conference call details, or contact Dawn Petit at dpetit@philabar.org or (215) 238- 6367. If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Tracey McCloskey at tmccloskey@philabar.org or (215) 238-6360.

All CLE programming, until further notice, will be offered via webcast. For course offerings, dates, and
times, please visit:

Philadelphia
Bar Association Calendar List

Then, type "CLE" in the search box and hit "Go."

The Philadelphia Bar Association is committed to the health and safety of our staff, members, and
visitors. We wish you and your loved ones well during these unusual circumstances. Further announcements
will be made as necessary.


During the week of February 23, the first incidence of “coronavirus disease 2019” (abbreviated
“COVID-19”) was reported in the United States. COVID-19 is a novel (new) coronavirus—named
“SARS-CoV-2”—which causes a respiratory illness whose symptoms can range from mild to severe. The
illness was first detected in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, before spreading into other countries. The
first U.S. cases have been the result of importation via travelers from Wuhan and their close contacts.

Clinical information currently suggests that most cases are mild, with serious illness occurring in about 16% of cases. Those prone to serious occurrences of the disease are older people, those with underlying health issues, such as heart
disease and diabetes, and those with compromised immune systems. Symptoms, such as fever, cough, and
shortness of breath, can appear 2-14 days after exposure. The disease is believed to be spread through the mucus membranes of the eyes, nose, and mouth, and via
airborne droplets from coughing or sneezing.

The United States Centers for Disease Control's current risk assessment of COVID-19 as it relates to the
U.S. population is that most of the American public is unlikely to be exposed at this time, and the
immediate health risk from COVID-19 is low. Healthcare workers and travelers returning from affected
international locations are at an elevated risk.

Where can I learn more about COVID-19?

Information and advice from the CDC about COVID-19 is available here. If you experience symptoms and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or who has
recently traveled from an area currently experiencing an outbreak, the CDC recommends that you call your doctor.


ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:

Information About the Coronavirus

  • U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    Provides information on what you should know about the disease, including how it spreads, symptoms,
    prevention and treatment, testing, and frequently asked questions. It also provides daily situation updates
    and information for communities, schools, businesses, and travel.
  • World Health Organization
    Provides advice for the public, daily situation updates, travel advice, and country-specific information.
  • Pennsylvania Department of Health
    Frequent updates on the status of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania, guidance on getting your household prepared for
    an outbreak, and advice on large gatherings and community events.
  • Philadelphia Department of Health
    Planning guidance for businesses and nonprofit organizations and the latest local information on COVID-19.
  • Pennsylvania Public Health Law Benchbook
    Designed for the courts and useful to practitioners, this benchbook provides a glossary of public
    health-related terminology, analysis and background information for some of the legal issues a court may be
    called upon to consider when a major health issue arises, model orders, and a table of cases.

For Announcements on the Status of Court Operations:

United States District Court:
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