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  • Writer's pictureLisa Jensen

Law in the Time of Corona

Suffice to say, it's a hard time to be an American, let alone one facing criminal charges.

With the Covid-19 pandemic still ongoing, you may be wondering how this will impact your basic fundamental rights to respond and combat criminal charges.

The California Courts have been issuing emergency orders to disrupt the status quo in favor of modified procedures intended to protect public health. The result? If you are waiting for your case to go to trial, you may be stuck waiting longer than you would have expected for your day in court. Even when you get to court, you may find that justice is out of reach because many hearings are being conducted over video streams, through masks, and at a distance. With many public agencies currently closed to the public or operating at reduced hours, our system of justice simply isn't running at its normal capacity.

I will say, I'm glad that the courts are trying to take steps to prevent unnecessary infections with the coronavirus. It's wise to take precautions with a new threat to public health. However, with these added roadblocks to due process, it's that much more important that people who are facing criminal charges take a thoughtful approach to their case strategy.

There are certainly going to be downsides to covid-era defense. But there may be some interesting upsides, too. Now more than ever, it will pay to be prepared, to have a strong attorney-client relationship, and to be ready to confront the changing landscape of the justice system head on.

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