The worldwide COVID-19 epidemic is impacting the State of California in an unprecedented manner. Los Angeles has issued the “Safer at Home” emergency order, which orders the residents of the city to limit their movements outside of their homes to what is necessary to take care of essential needs, in order to contain the spread of coronavirus.

This order has led to many businesses and offices to close for this period, including courts in the area. If you have an open criminal case, you might be wondering how this affects you or what to do next.

Los Angeles area COVID-19 court closures (Updated 4/10)

Court Status of public access Status of filing Court Holiday declared until: (earliest possible date) Notes
  Kern County Superior Court Partial

Court only open to hear essential matters

eFiling

You may submit eFilings but there may be delays

5/4/2020 While eFilings can be submitted, you may not receive a response until after the court holiday period has ended
Los Angeles County Superior Court Partial

Court only open to hear essential matters

 

eFiling

Civil and probate matters can be eFiled

Dropbox

Family and complex civil can be dropboxed

N/A While eFilings can be submitted and filings are being delivered to the court’s dropbox, you may experience delays receiving stamped copies
San Bernardino County Superior Court Closed

Entry to the court is strictly limited for emergency matters

Unavailable

Only emergency TROs may be dropboxed at this time

5/1/2020 You may submit filings but they will not be delivered until the court re-opens.
Orange County Superior Court Partial

Court only open to hear essential matters

eFiling

You may submit eFilings but there may be delays

4/27/2020 While eFilings can be submitted, you may not receive a response until after the court holiday period has ended
Ventura County Superior Court Closed

Entry to the court is strictly limited for emergency matters

Unavailable

Please contact the court for info re. emergency filings

4/20/2020 You may submit filings but they will not be delivered until the court re-opens.

COVID-19 policy changes 

Both the Los Angeles Police Department and jails in the area have changed policies in order to limit the spread of coronavirus.

As a result of this, LA county has recently reduced its jail inmate population by 10% by releasing those serving time for nonviolent crimes and who had less than 30 days left on their sentences. While there are no further plans to release more people, the Sheriff’s office has confirmed that there is a plan in place to release inmates who may be sick to the Department of Public Health, as well as any homeless inmates.

LAPD is and will continue to making fewer arrests for nonviolent minor offences as a way to also reduce contact and the jail population.

LAPD has closed down its front desk operations and walk-up services, and it has asked the public to email their local station rather than going in to talk to officers in person in an effort to reduce social contact. The department has increased the number of its workforce on patrol assignments.

Email contacts for LAPD Districts are as follows

  • 77th@lapd.online
  • CentralTraffic@lapd.online
  • Central@lapd.online
  • Devonshire@lapd.online
  • Foothill@lapd.online
  • Harbor@lapd.online
  • Hollenbeck@lapd.online
  • Hollywood@lapd.online
  • Mission@lapd.online
  • Newton@lapd.online
  • Noho@lapd.online
  • Northeast@lapd.online
  • Olympic@lapd.online
  • Pacific@lapd.online
  • Rampart@lapd.online
  • SouthTraffic@lapd.online
  • Southeast@lapd.online
  • Southwest@lapd.online
  • Topanga@lapd.online
  • ValleyTraffic@lapd.online
  • VanNuys@lapd.online
  • WestLA@lapd.online
  • WestTraffic@lapd.online
  • WestValley@lapd.online
  • Wilshire@lapd.online

The Los Angeles ‘Safer at Home’ Order

As we mentioned above, the City of Los Angeles has issued a Safer at Home emergency order calling for residents to stay inside their residences until April 19, 2020 (subject to review by the mayor). Residents that are classed as “non-essential workers” are asked to stay at home unless they need to do something essential, such as grocery shopping or picking up medication at a pharmacy.

This is a legally enforceable order and the failure to comply is classed as a misdemeanor that can result in fines or jail time. Members of the public are being encouraged to report businesses who are violating the order. The “Safer at Home” Business Ambassadors program will deploy staff to non-essential businesses that seem to be out of compliance, and the LAPD are and will continue to monitor businesses closely.