Beasley extends emergency directives for N.C. Courts

Former North Carolina Supreme Court chief justice Cheri Beasley speaks at a luncheon in this file photo.

RALEIGH – North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley on Monday extended emergency directives in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that will continue to postpone jury trials and encourage social distancing measures.

“Courthouses are open across North Carolina, but the public health threat posed by COVID-19 remains an ongoing challenge,” said Chief Justice Beasley. “These orders help to mitigate these challenges and strike the proper balance between postponing court business and resuming full court operations.”

According to the Monday press release, more than 10,000 pending summary ejectment actions are pending in the state’s court system. Beasley’s COVID-19 Task Force recommended that the Chief Justice allow clerks of superior court additional time to schedule hearings in those matters.

In May and June, NSJ reported on two occasions that jury trials would be postponed through at least July. Part of Beasley’s order, directive #10, says:

No jury trials shall be convened in the district or superior courts of this State for the next thirty (30) days. Although this emergency directive will expire in 30 days pursuant to N.C.G.S. § 7A-39(b)(2), it is my intention to extend this directive through at least the end of July and judicial officials are directed to plan accordingly.

The full emergency directive can be found here.