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Policy Statement

Policy Statement Hampden County - Guidelines for Operation for Civil Session During COVID-19 Pandemic

Date: 03/31/2020
Referenced Sources: Superior Court Protocols by County

Table of Contents

Protocol for Civil Sessions

  1. All civil proceedings currently scheduled to occur on or before May 1, 2020 shall be re-scheduled by the clerk to a date on or after June 1, 2020.
  2. Until further notice, there will be one emergency civil session for Hampden Superior Court.  The emergency civil session will be staffed by a judge/session clerk team on a rotating basis.  Any motion that a party presents as an emergency will be reviewed by the emergency judge, who will decide whether it needs to be heard and/or ruled on.
  3. Until further notice, hearings will only be granted in emergency and time-sensitive matters. If the emergency judge determines that a hearing should be conducted on an emergency or time-sensitive matter, it will be conducted by video and/or telephonic means, with the exception of petitions filed under G.L. c. 112, § 125 (“Mary Moe” petitions), which may be held in person.
  4. Civil filings must be e-filed to or mailed. The clerk’s office will process the filings, including any submissions pursuant to Superior Court Rule 9A, subject to available staffing, and bring them to the attention of a judge as soon as practicable. With regard to emergency and time-sensitive filings, parties should call or email the clerk’s office to alert the clerk of the emergency nature of the filing.
  5. Parties may seek extensions of tracking order deadlines or other deadlines (beyond those ordered by the SJC) based on the COVID-19 emergency by written motion filed in accordance with Superior Court Rule 9A. To the extent that there are reasons other than the COVID-19 emergency for the need for an extension, these should be included in the motion.
  6. In the event of a court closure, in order to expedite consideration, all filings should be made electronically to  The Clerk has remote access to emailed filings and such filings will be processed for consideration by a judge as soon as practicable.
Referenced Sources: