Presiding Judge Eric C. Taylor today announced changes the Court will make over the next 60 days to provide more timely access to justice by shifting resources to manage caseloads, help settle more cases, offer more trial capacity by reopening departments closed prior to the pandemic, and being prepared for any increase in Unlawful Detainer (UD) cases, among other changes.

“I want to express my gratitude to Governor Newsom, the Legislature and the Judicial Council for prioritizing and providing state trial court funding to help with pandemic-related case delays,” Presiding Judge Taylor said. “We are facing the dual challenges of recovering from caseloads impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and safely opening our trial courts more fully amid a fourth surge of COVID-19 cases in Los Angeles County and around the country. The Court is carefully watching local COVID trends as we move forward in a measured way to resolve Civil cases more quickly, provide more trial time, and increase capacity to resolve UD and Small Claims cases.”

Under the direction of Supervising Civil Judge David J. Cowan, these changes will take effect over the next two months:

  • Adding three Independent Calendar (I/C) courtrooms, two in the San Gabriel Valley and one in West Los Angeles to assist districts with high case filings. Converting these trial departments will allow judges to assist parties by managing the case from the start, not just at trial.
  • Converting two trial courtrooms to conduct Mandatory Settlement Conferences, at the Van Nuys and Beverly Hills Courthouses. This change will allow judges to dedicate their time to resolving cases in the impacted districts.
  • Reopening three now-closed trial departments, opening one courtroom in West Los Angeles, one in the San Fernando Valley, and one in the South Bay; all of which will try cases from around the County.
  • Adding a sixth Personal Injury (PI) courtroom at the Spring Street Courthouse. This change will reduce delays in scheduling hearings and reduce case inventory of each judge. Presiding Judge Taylor has selected Judge Daniel Crowley to serve as the first Managing PI Hub Judge to assist with coordination of cases toward resolution.
  • Adding another courtroom in West Covina to handle increased UD and Small Claims cases/trials, allowing other departments to focus on hearing trials of PI cases. An existing UD department in Van Nuys will hold trials in addition to other UD hearings.

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View the full notice here.

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