Court personnel, litigants and their attorneys clearly felt the impact of Covid-19 as they were struggling to stand upright in a world turned upside down. Personal lives were disrupted. Court operations were chaotic. Filings, motions, depositions, hearings, trials were massively upset with many defaults and dismissals. The self-represented faced closed help centers. Everyone faced initial challenges of life under emergency directives. and the implementation of a variety of new ways to operate while reducing in person contact.
How prepared were we for such an unanticipated event? How well did we do? How can we avoid chaos in the future and minimize fallout? Like picking up the rubble after a tornado has blown through your house, everyone is struggling to return to a new normal. The impact of Covid-19 was so widespread and the plethora of issues provoked so complex, that it’s going to take a while. Yet now, more than two years later, the pandemic is waning Recovery has begun.
The Historical Society of the New York State Courts offers a look back at Covid-19’s impact in Dispensing Justice From a Distance: Journal of the NYS Courts During the 2020-2021 Pandemic.
A host of additional resources highlight that problems are being recognized and solutions being formulated. Several of these have been organized in, COVID-19’s Impact on the New York State Courts, Legal Community, and Litigants – The following Selected Bibliography, compiles articles, reports and websites reflecting the state of the literature available with a specific focus on issues affecting the New York State Courts.