Tennessee Again Suspends Jury Trials, Citing The Coronavirus

Nov 18, 2020

Tennessee's Supreme Court has again pause in-person court proceedings across the state to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Credit Tony Gonzalez / WPLN News (File)

Tennessee’s record-setting COVID cases have prompted the suspension of all jury trials through the end of January.

The order from the state’s Supreme Court came down Tuesday, reinstating rules that initially ran from March through most of May.

The justices say they’ve heard reports of lacking compliance, including COVID-positive people attending court.

The statewide order also reminds attorneys and judges that masks are required in courtrooms. Virtual hearings are encouraged wherever possible, and the justices ask that in-person hearings are scheduled so as to minimize wait times in hallways.

The halt to jury trials takes effect Monday, with exceptions to be granted only by approval of Chief Justice Jeff Bivins.