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CT JUDICIAL BRANCH CONTINUES WITH EXPANSION OF OPERATIONS

Effective Monday, June 29, the Judicial Branch is targeting the resumption of limited operations in four additional courthouse locations: the Judicial District courthouses in Danbury, Milford and Stamford, and at the Geographical Area No.11 courthouse in Danielson. This expansion will bring the number of open courthouses to 17 –the Supreme and Appellate courts, 13 Superior Court locations and two juvenile court locations.

As such, one Superior Court courthouse will be open in each of the 13 Judicial Districts. The Judicial Branch is also planning to expand its hours and days of operations. The details of the Branch’s planning include the following goals:

  • Starting the week of June 15, all open courthouse locations will be open each day, Monday through Friday. The hours for the public will be Monday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Tuesday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  • Starting the week of June 29, the Danbury, Milford, Stamford and Danielson courthouses will be open to the public. Consistent with all other open courthouse locations, public hours will be Monday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Tuesday through Friday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  • Starting the week of July 6, open courthouse locations will be open to the public from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Most work within the open court locations will continue to focus on those most pressing matters such as criminal arraignments for defendants held on bond, domestic violence cases, restraining orders, emergency child custody matters, juvenile detention hearings, and all other emergency matters. “We continue to plan for increasing expansion of the Branch’s physical footprint and all business operations in a way that places personal safety of the public, the bar and employees at the forefront while also balancing the requirement to continue to provide expanded access,” Chief Court Administrator Patrick L. Carroll III said.

STATE OF CONNECTICUT JUDICIAL BRANCH

“In addition to expanding courthouse locations, business operations have rapidly expanded across all divisions by the use of remote technology. In just a few weeks’ time, family court has held over 600 remote status or settlement conferences and disposed of more than 300 divorce cases remotely. Civil court has conducted close to 1,000 remote events and has ruled on more than 7,000 short calendar matters. Juvenile Court is holding remote detention hearings each day of operation and reviewing permanency plans remotely,” Judge Carroll said.

The Branch continues to expand the handling of criminal matters as well. Judges will begin conducting remote pretrial conferences on Monday, June 8. Using Microsoft Teams technology, the court will conduct remote pretrial hearings with a judge, a prosecutor and the defense attorney to see if an agreement maybe reached. The initial focus of these remote pre-trials will be on cases involving defendants in custody. If an agreement is reached, the case will be docketed for plea and/or disposition. Future plans for the processing of criminal matters include pleas/sentencings of incarcerated defendants.“When appropriate, these hearings can be heard via video conferencing at correctional facilities,” Judge Carroll said. “Our criminal matters unit is working closely with the Department of Correction to ensure there are time slots available for each courthouse. DOC has acquired technology that will allow the agency to open an additional hearing room at certain high-volume correctional facilities.”

“We continue to make great progress in the face of some significant challenges, and we look forward to providing additional information as we continue to resume operations,” Judge Carroll added.

*Please note that anyone entering a court facility must wear a face mask covering their mouth and nose. In addition, to allow for adequate social distancing in a courthouse, courtroom or in the lobby, the number of people may be limited.

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