Court Operations Update
|Pandemic Operational Plan, September 2020|
|Chief Judge Marx's Message to Potential Jurors|
Chief Justice Canady, of the Florida Supreme Court issued Administrative Order AOSC20-2 Amendment 4, on Thursday, May 21, 2020, directing chief judges in all 20 circuits in the state to design a plan to begin a systematic return to the way court proceedings were held before the COVID-19 pandemic. To effectuate this plan, the Chief Justice outlined four phases of court operations with corresponding bench mark criteria.
As of September 9, 2020, The Fifteenth Judicial Circuit entered into Phase 2. Phase 2 expands the type of proceedings that can be held face-to-face, using protective methods such as face coverings and social distancing. Information regarding the Court’s operations during Phase 2, including the specific types of proceedings that may be held face-to-face during Phase 2, are outlined in Administrative Order 12.510 (Updated January 21, 2021)
Please continue to monitor our website for further updates.
HOW to ZOOM: instructions for attorneys and litigants regarding remote hearings
Persons entering the courthouses will have their temperature taken. See the Press Release below:
04-03-2020 Press Release from Chief Judge
The Court is also requesting your assistance in limiting the spread of COVID-19.
Please do not come to any of the courthouses if you answer yes to any of the following questions;
Question 1: Do you have any of the following symptoms (excluding those due to a known medical reason other than COVID-19):
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Fever or chills
- Muscle or body aches
- Sore throat
- New loss of taste or smell
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
Question 2: Are you currently awaiting the results of a test to determine if you have COVID-19 based on symptoms or suspected exposure?
Question 3: Are you under instructions to self-isolate or quarantine due to COVID-19?
Question 4: Within the past 14 days, have you had close contact with someone with a COVID-19 diagnosis or who is awaiting test results for COVID-19 based on symptoms or suspected exposure? (Note: Close contact is defined as contact that is less than 6 feet for 15 minutes or more, irrespective of whether a cloth face covering or respiratory PPE was worn).
If you answer YES to any of the above questions and are required to report or appear in court, you should proceed as follows:
For Jury Service
Contact the Jury office at (561) 355-2407 or (561) 355-2930 (after hours) or 1-888-780-5032 to reschedule your service to a later date. You may also request a postponement online.
For Traffic Court
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all civil traffic infraction pretrial hearings will be conducted remotely using the ZOOM platform. There are no "in person" pretrial hearings scheduled at any of our courthouse locations at the present time and therefore you should not appear at the courthouse for your hearing. Similarly, there are no "in person" trials set at the courthouse at this time. Beginning June 17, 2020, we will begin phasing in remote civil traffic infraction trials.
In order to receive the most up to date notifications about your hearing, you must advise the Clerk of your current email address. You can do this by going to the Palm Beach County Clerk's website page.
If you have not yet received your court date or are not sure when it is scheduled, please go to Palm Beach County Clerk's Traffice Violations page and look up your case to see when your hearing has been set.
If your hearing will be conducted remotely, you should not appear at one of the Palm Beach County Courthouses for this hearing.
The email will include instructions for accessing your remote hearing. In order to appear remotely, you will need either a multimedia device connected to the internet: PC Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device equipped with a microphone and preferably a webcam; OR a cellular phone or land telephone line. If you do not receive a notice that your traffic trial will be conducted remotely, you will instead receive a new notice of final hearing from the Clerk's office resetting your case.
If for any reason you are unable to participate remotely, via the Zoom platform, you must file a letter with the Clerk explaining why you are unable to appear remotely. This letter must be filed with the Clerk at least three business days prior to the date of your hearing.
For more information about civil traffic infraction cases, please visit Traffic Division page.
For Criminal Court
- If you are a Defendant and are represented by an attorney, contact your attorney for instructions and assistance.
- If you are a Defendant and do not have an attorney, contact the divisional judge assigned to your case to reschedule or, if possible and permitted by the presiding judge, to appear telephonically. Find the divisional contact information.
- Witnesses and victims, please contact the appropriate agency that has been in touch with you about the matter you are scheduled to appear in.
For Civil and Unified Family Court
- If you are represented by an attorney, contact your attorney for instructions and assistance.
- If you are a party and are not represented by an attorney, contact the divisional judge assigned to your case to reschedule or, if possible and permitted by the presiding judicial officer, to appear by telephone. Find the divisional contact information.
- If you are a witness, please contact the party who requested your appearance.