As part of the District of New Jersey’s continuing response to the ongoing public health emergency and in light of the current extent of the spread of COVID-19 in the state, on March 16, 2022, Chief Judge Freda L. Wolfson of the District of New Jersey issued Standing Order 2022-01, which updated the District’s COVID Safety Protocols. Standing Order 2022-01 includes the following key provisions:
- The wearing of masks and other face coverings is now optional in most situations within the District of New Jersey’s court facilities, although it remains encouraged.
- Notwithstanding the foregoing, prospective jurors will still be required to wear masks or other face coverings. Members of a sitting, fully-vaccinated jury (which may be requested by consenting parties in a civil jury trial) will not be required to wear masks.
- Moreover, the presiding judicial officer may direct that appropriate face coverings or masks be worn during any in-Court proceedings by any person and regardless of vaccination status.
- Social distancing requirements are suspended for employees and visitors because all employees must be fully vaccinated and boosted, and visitors only allowed entry upon proof of full vacation or a negative test result as already required by Standing Order 2021-08. Three feet social distancing will be maintained between all jurors.
- Proof of a negative COVID test can now be shown through both PCR and rapid tests.
- Temperature screening to enter the courthouse is no longer required, but is still available at entrances to court facilities.
A full copy of Standing Order 2022-01 may be found here.