Friday, April 10, 2020
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA: Superior Court of Alameda County announces new Emergency Local Rules, the opening of limited emergency Civil, Family, and Probate fax filing opportunities, and the tentative start of limited emergency hearings the week of April 20, 2020. The Court also orders release of additional persons from Santa Rita Jail.

Pursuant to newly adopted Emergency Local Rule 1.8a, the Superior Court of Alameda County (Court) announces the resumption of the Court’s fax filing service—which the Court temporarily suspended due to the COVID-19 crisis—for certain enumerated emergency-related Civil, Family, and Probate documents, effective Monday, April 13, 2020. Rule 1.8a also expands the types of documents that can be filed at the Court’s drop box locations and adds a drop box filing option for Probate documents at the Berkeley Courthouse. To facilitate access to justice during this extended emergency closure period, the Court will waive fax filing surcharges for litigants who have a fee waiver and will accept fee waiver applications via both fax filing and drop box.

Subject to ongoing staff and resource constraints, the Court is working toward conducting a limited number of related emergency hearings, tentatively starting the week of April 20, 2020. Such hearings will be set at the discretion of the judicial officers assigned to the affected cases and will be conducted remotely via telephone or videoconference. The Court will provide additional details regarding these hearings through a future press release and through the adoption of additional Emergency Local Rules.

Further, on April 10, 2020, the Court’s Presiding Judge, Hon. Tara M. Desautels, issued a General Order releasing 19 additional persons from the Santa Rita Jail. Each of the persons released had 66 or fewer days left to serve on their felony sentences; their sentences are deemed served. The Court is also preparing to release from Santa Rita additional persons whose bail will be reduced to $0.00 pursuant to Emergency Rule 4, adopted by the Judicial Council of California on April 6, 2020, and codified by the Court as amended Local Rule 4.115 on April 8, 2020.

As always, details on these and other COVID-19 related updates will be posted on the Court’s dedicated COVID-19 web page.

View the full notice here.

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