IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF DELAWARE
IN RE: COURT OPERATIONS UNDER : STANDING ORDER
THE EXIGENT CIRCUMSTANCES :
CREATED BY COVID-19 : TRANSITION TO PHASE 3
AND NOW, this 25th day of May, 2021, pursuant to recently-updated guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Administrative Office of the United States Courts (AO), the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH), and on the recommendation of the Court’s Re-Opening Committee, which has conferred throughout the pandemic to draft and adopt Court operating and reopening guidelines,
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED as follows:
1. The District of Delaware will begin to operate under Phase 3 of the Re-Opening Guidelines on June 7, 2021. Phase 3 begins a return to normal court operations and permits the Court to fully resume on-site and public-facing activities, including court proceedings, at the discretion of the presiding judge in each individual case.
2. As of the date of this Order, the Court remains able to conduct only one jury trial at a time. It is expected that with the easing of social distancing requirements (see below) and improving health conditions the Court will soon be able to expand to conducting multiple simultaneous jury trials (although jury selection is likely to be limited to one trial per day).
3. Following the Twenty-Ninth Modification of the Declaration of a State of Emergency for the State of Delaware issued by Governor John Carney, effective May 21, 2021, masks will continue to be required in all public common areas, and social distancing requirements will be reduced from six feet to three feet in all areas of the courthouse. See also In re: Use of Face Mask/Coverings in Public Areas of the District and Bankruptcy Courts, Revised Standing Order (July 16, 2020) (available at https://www.ded.uscourts.gov/sites/ded/files/news/ORDER%20FACE%20COVERING%207-16-20.pdf).
4. Presiding judges will determine if and when masks may be removed in the courtroom.
5. The Court will continue to monitor conditions with respect to coronavirus in Delaware and the surrounding region and will consider guidance from the CDC and other federal, state, and local public health authorities, and will modify its procedures as warranted.
FOR THE COURT:
/s/ Leonard P. Stark
Chief District Judge