Kentucky State Courts Set to Expand Limited, In-Person, Court Services

COVID-19 Update: Kentucky Supreme Court Issues an Amended Order Regarding Juries.

Following its amended order of May 15, 2020, the Kentucky Supreme Court entered another administrative order today in its continuing effort to expand access to Kentucky’s state courts in light of guidance issued by Governor Andy Beshear’s office and the Center for Disease Control. In particular, this order addresses civil and criminal jury trials, grand juries, and jury service. Importantly, the order requires courts to postpone all jury trials until August 1, 2020, with criminal trials taking priority over all other matters. The order notes, however, that grand jury proceedings may resume immediately, and courts may conduct them remotely.

The order also addresses juror participation during the midst of the current pandemic. Specifically, it requires courts to maintain social distancing in grand jury panels, and it requires grand jurors to wear face masks. It also provides that courts may postpone jury service for those individuals who have to care for someone who is ill or is in a high-risk category or those who have suffered an economic loss due to the pandemic.

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