South Carolina courts reopen with pandemic adjustments

South Carolina News

The South Carolina Supreme Court met Tuesday, May 12, 2020, in Columbia, S.C., for its first- ever oral arguments via teleconference. The Court heard concerns over potential difficulties of voting in this year’s elections due to the coronavirus outbreak, as social distancing recommendations remain in place. (AP Photo/Meg Kinnard)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Six months after shutting down the state’s court system in an effort to stem the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, South Carolina’s top jurist now says courts may resume in-person operations with considerations for trying to contain COVID-19.

Supreme Court Chief Justice Don Beatty wrote in an order Monday that courts may return to normal scheduling, docket management and in-person hearings as of Sept. 21.

But the top judge noted that it is still up to judges to determine whether to conduct remote hearings.

Consent is not required by involved parties or their attorneys. Beatty shut down court operations in mid-March.

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