Today, the Iowa Supreme Court approved the Fiscal Year 2021 Iowa Judicial Branch budget that begins July 1, 2020, based on this year's legislative appropriation of $181,023,737 which is $500,000 less than the appropriation in FY 2020.
June 30, 2020, is the last day of the 2019-2020 Iowa Supreme Court adjudicative term. During the term, 109 cases were submitted to the court. All of the cases submitted to the court are complete, and the opinions are available on the Iowa Judicial Branch website at https://www.iowacourts.gov/iowa-courts/supreme-court/supreme-court-opinions/ . Oral argument videos, case briefs, attorney names, and the Iowa Court of Appeals decisions from further review cases can be found on the Iowa Judicial Branch website by searching for the case name or number using the site’s search function on the home page at https://www.iowacourts.gov .
For the second consecutive month, the Iowa Court of Appeals will hold oral arguments using videoconferencing. The court will livestream oral arguments in nine cases between June 22 and June 24.
The Iowa State Association of Counties and the Iowa Judicial Branch Approve a Recommended Checklist for Mitigating Exposure to COVID-19 in County Courthouses While Providing Services to the Public
The Iowa State Association of Counties (ISAC) and the Iowa Judicial Branch have collaborated on a checklist of COVID-19 protective measures so members of the public and state and county employees can safely return to Iowa’s courthouses. The checklist addresses signage, personal protective equipment, social distancing, and cleaning. Judicial branch officials, county elected officials, and county department heads in each courthouse can use the checklist as a guide as they prepare to resume in-person operations
Today, the Iowa Supreme Court issued a supervisory order stating face-to-face court proceedings will commence July 13, 2020, and jury trials will commence September 14, 2020. Some counties may begin face-to-face proceedings before July 13 if the county courthouse is open to the public and the court operations in that county meet COVID-19 safety protocols recommended by state court administration.
For the first time in its history, the Iowa Court of Appeals will hold oral arguments using videoconferencing May 21 and 22 in response to the public health emergency caused by the COVID-19 global pandemic. The oral arguments will be livestreamed on the Iowa Court of Appeals YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5YFPOlrqxU1hxqUJaZKHWw.
The Iowa Supreme Court today issued a supervisory order expressing gratitude for the Iowa COVID-19 Legal Advice Hotline and strongly encouraging all Iowa lawyers to provide free or low-cost legal information and services either through the Legal Hotline or other options. The order temporarily changes Iowa Court Rules governing providing free and reduced-cost legal services in Iowa.
Judicial branch offers multiple options for paying court fines and fees during the coronavirus pandemic
Iowans now have four ways to pay outstanding court fines and fees while following social distancing and self-isolation restrictions. All fines and fees can be mailed to the appropriate clerk of court office. The Iowa Judicial Branch offers a pay online option. People with multiple fines or fees on multiple cases can pay with a single payment using the shopping cart feature on Iowa Courts Online. And, the newest option, now available, is a single statewide number to pay by phone.
Following Governor Reynolds's State of Public Health Emergency Declaration earlier today, the Iowa Supreme Court issued an order permitting new ways to access courts to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Today, the Iowa Supreme Court issued an order postponing all criminal jury trials until April 20 and all civil jury trials until May 4 unless the jury has been sworn in. The postponements are to protect public safety by mitigating the impact of coronavirus/COVID-19. Clerk of court offices throughout the state will remain open.