Yesterday the Federal Circuit released a “Notice of Revised Building Access Restrictions and Protocols for In-Person Argument.” In addition to previous protocols released on October 25, 2021, the court has added a new building-wide mask requirement and various other restrictions for the National Courts Building. The court also issued revised protocols for in-person argument that includes mask mandates, attendance limitations, and health certifications that will apply once in-person argument resumes. Here is the text of the announcement.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the U.S. Court of Federal Claims have entered a new joint order modifying and superseding their prior administrative order of October 25, 2021, concerning access to the National Courts Building complex in Washington, D.C. The order maintains existing access restrictions, adds additional building-wide masking requirements, and clarifies that those participating in hearings are subject to additional requirements each court may impose.
Except for necessary access for hearing participation, which is covered by the court’s Revised Protocols for In-Person Argument, requests for access relating to all other Federal Circuit business or spaces within the National Courts Building must be submitted in writing through the Facilities and Security Office, which will be handled on a case-by-case basis and must be submitted in writing at least 24 hours ahead of time. These restrictions will remain in effect until further notice. The full administrative order is available on the court’s website (pdf).
Consistent with the updated administrative order, the Federal Circuit has also issued new Revised Protocols for In-Person Argument that will apply once the court resumes in-person arguments. The new revised protocols update requirements for masking, attendance limitations, and health certifications.
To review ongoing updates and information about the Federal Circuit’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, please go to the court’s COVID-19 information page.