As previously reported here, the Supreme Court of North Carolina at the end of March issued an order extending all appellate court deadlines falling between March 27 and April 30, 2020 for 60 days.

As a service to the bar, the Clerks of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals have posted answers to some of the most frequently asked questions they have received about the order. … Continue Reading

In State v. Golder, 79PA18, filed 3 April 2020, the Supreme Court of North Carolina provided helpful guidance on a vexing issue relating to error preservation:  Does a general motion to dismiss preserve for appellate review arguments relating to insufficiency of the evidence?  At the same time, the Court resolved a split on the issue in the jurisprudence of the Court of Appeals.… Continue Reading

The Fourth Circuit yesterday amended its prior Order suspending the oral argument requirement for published cases to apply to “cases tentatively calendared for May 5-8, 2020.”   The Court noted that

Although the pressures of the public health crisis preventing in-person argument in
March, April, and May 2020 have occasioned a temporary change in the court’s practices,
the court is nonetheless affording these cases equal jurisprudential rigor and attention.

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The Fourth Circuit this morning released a public advisory on its upcoming remote oral arguments.  See here.  The Court is scheduling certain upcoming arguments for videoconference or teleconference, and released a schedule for these arguments.  Similar to what the Court did for some of the recent high profile arguments, such as the “travel ban” case, the arguments will be available to listen to live.… Continue Reading

Today, the Supreme Court of North Carolina gave some grace on appellate filings impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The order issued by the Court does three things:

  1. Extends for 60 days all deadlines imposed by the Rules of Appellate Procedure that fall between March 27, 2020 and April 30, 2020 (inclusive of those dates).
  2. Encourages the electronic filing of all documents with the appellate courts.
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Fourth Circuit Chief Judge Gregory today issued “Standing Order 20-01,” which temporarily suspends Fourth Circuit Local Rule 36(a) requiring that any published opinion have oral argument.  Due to the social distancing required by the coronavirus pandemic, “cases calendared for oral argument in March or April 2020 but not presented at oral argument may be decided by published opinion with the unanimous consent of the panel.” … Continue Reading

After three years of exemplary service to our State, Matt Sawchak will step down as Solicitor General effective March 31, 2020.  General Sawchak–soon just “Matt” or “Professor Sawchak” again–has represented the State with aplomb in state and federal appellate courts, including the Supreme Court of North Carolina and the United States Supreme Court.

Deputy Solicitor General Ryan Park will step into the lead role on April 1.  … Continue Reading

On Tuesday, Troy posted on the uncertainty surrounding how North Carolina appeals are being impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.  On Thursday, the Chief Justice issued a catastrophic conditions order extending deadlines and other court proceedings for one month.  Notably, this extension order does not apply to documents filed or acts to be done in the appellate courts. (But see final two paragraphs below).… Continue Reading

Here is a compilation of the current status of the federal appellate courts and announcements about their respective changes, closings, and procedures as of the afternoon of March 19, 2020.  Click on the name of the court to be taken directly to that court’s website.   As with everything surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, things are changing rapidly, so we encourage you to check the courts’ websites frequently if you have pending cases and deadlines.… Continue Reading