New courthouse procedures implemented for COVID-19

Mar 17, 2020

The New York State Unified Court System has postponed all non-essential functions until further notice to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Administrative Judge Paula Feroleto has issued an order for all courts outside New York City. It says matters in each county will be condensed into one location and only essential cases will be heard, as well as after-hour arraignments. Western New York facilities are as follows:

  • Allegany County: Allegany County Courthouse, Belmont
  • Cattaraugus County: Cattaraugus County Courthouse, Little Valley
  • Olean City Court: Cattaraugus County Courthouse, Little Valley
  • Salamanca City Court: Cattaraugus County Courthouse, Little Valley
  • Chautauqua County: Chautauqua County Courthouse, Mayville
  • Dunkirk City Court: Chautauqua County Courthouse, Mayville
  • Jamestown City Court: Chautauqua County Courthouse, Mayville
  • Erie County: Erie County Courthouse, Buffalo
  • Buffalo City Court: Erie County Courthouse, Buffalo
  • Lackawana City Court: Erie County Courthouse, Buffalo
  • Tonawanda City Court: Erie County Courthouse, Buffalo
  • Genesee County: Genesee County Court Facility, Batavia
  • Batavia City Court: Genesee County Court Facility, Batavia
  • Niagara County: Niagara County Courthouse, Lockport
  • Lockport City Court: Niagara County Courthouse, Lockport
  • Niagara Falls City Court: Niagara County Courthouse, Lockport
  • North Tonawanada City Court: Niagara County Courthouse, Lockport
  • Orleans County: Orleans County Courthouse, Albion
  • Wyoming County: Wyoming County Courthouse, Warsaw

After-hour criminal court arraignments and applications for emergency orders of protection will be conducted in the appropriate jurisdictional city, town or village justice court facility. Chautauqua County and Niagara County after-hour arraignments will be conducted in their respective Centralized Arraignment Parts.

In addition:
1. All pending criminal court proceedings for defendants who have been arraigned and released on their own recognizance are adjourned until at least April 30. For defendants who have been arraigned and are in custody, all pending criminal court matters are adjourned until at least April 15. Defendants will receive new notices of their future scheduled court dates.

2. All criminal court matters scheduled to be heard for arraignments on criminal court appearance tickets in any city, town and village justice court are adjourned until at least April 30 and defendants will be notified of future court dates.

3. All post-arraignment criminal court proceedings are adjourned until at least April 30 and defendants will be notified of future court dates through their attorneys. Pro se defendants will be notified by the court.

4. Regular business-day criminal court arraignments will be conducted in the courthouses listed above. After-hour, weekend or holiday criminal court arraignments will be conducted in the appropriate jurisdictional city, town or village justice court facility. Chautauqua County and Niagara County after-hour arraignments will be conducted in their respective Centralized Arraignment Parts.

5. All Orders of Protections and Temporary Order of Protection issued by any criminal, family or civil court (including Supreme, County, Family, City, Town and Village Courts) are extended 90 days.

6. All non-essential pending civil actions and proceedings in any Supreme, County, Surrogate’s City and Town and Village Court are adjourned until at least April 30. Parties in these actions and proceedings will be advised through their attorneys or pro parties will be advised directly by the court.

7. All non-essential pending Family Court matters are adjourned until at least April 30. Parties in these actions and proceedings will be advised through their attorneys or pro parties will be advised directly by the Court.

8. For criminal court proceedings, essential court matters include, but are not limited to, arraignments and new or extended orders of protection.

9. For Family Court proceedings, essential court matters include, but are not limited to, urgent juvenile delinquency proceedings, child protective proceedings where there in an imminent risk of harm to a child , urgent family offense matters and emergency support matters.

10. For Supreme Court civil actions and proceedings, essential court matters include, but are not limited to, urgent Article 81 guardianship matters, Mental Hygiene Law applications (Retention Cases/Medication/Treatment Over Objection Proceedings), Orders to Show Cause, Extreme Risk Protection Orders, Applications for Orders of Protection, Isolation and Quarantine Proceedings.

11. For Surrogate’s Court proceedings, essential court matters include, but are not limited to, urgent guardianship, adoption and other essential cases as determined by the court.

12. No evictions orders will be granted by any city, town or village justice court.

13. No default judgments will be granted.

14. No foreclosure auctions shall be held.