News Item
State Courts To Resume In-Person Criminal Jury Trials March 15

Posted: Friday, February 19, 2021

State Courts To Resume In-Person Criminal Jury Trials March 15

In-person criminal jury trials for all case types will resume in all state district courts effective March 15, 2021 under a new statewide order issued by Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Lorie S. Gildea.
“We are gradually increasing in-person activities in court facilities in a safe and responsible manner that will allow the courts to fulfill our constitutional obligation, while we continue to do all that we can to protect public health and safety,” said Chief Justice Lorie S. Gildea.
Below is a summary of the order; for full details, see the order.
  • Criminal Jury Trials: In-person criminal jury trials in all case types may commence March 15, 2021, as long as the court adheres to the Minnesota Judicial Branch COVID-19 Preparedness Plan and approved local jury trial plans.
  • Civil Jury Trials: No in-person civil jury trials will commence before April 30, 2021, unless an exception is granted by the Chief Judge after consultation with the Chief Justice. Civil jury trials may proceed remotely if the presiding judge and the parties agree.
  • Remote Hearings: Hearings across all case types will be conducted remotely. Exceptions may be granted for in-person hearings under limited circumstances.
  • Case Filings: All courts will continue to accept case filings.
  • Public Access: At least one counter service window must be open in each county and for the appellate courts during normal business hours, excluding court holidays. Services may be provided by appointment, remotely or by telephone. Contact the county court for more information.
  • Media Access: For updates on access to public access terminals (courthouse terminals) and attending in-person court proceedings, contact the Court Information Office.
  • Self-Help Center services are available by appointment, remotely or by telephone.
  • The Minnesota State Law Library is open by appointment only.