This morning, the Federal Circuit announced that the court has entered a new order concerning access to the National Courts Building complex in Washington, D.C., limiting access through August 31. Here is the text of today’s announcement.
Federal Circuit Issues Notice of Modifications to Court Operations and New Protocols for In-Person Arguments
This morning the Federal Circuit announced that starting August 30, for the first time since the onset of the pandemic more than a year ago, it will hold in-person oral arguments. Indeed, the court has indicated that every argument will be scheduled to occur in person, but that the court will entertain motions for leave to appear remotely in appropriate circumstances. The court issued protocols for these in-person arguments, along with an indication of appropriate bases for obtaining permission to appear remotely. Notably, the protocols highlight “the court’s strong preference for in-person argument, based on the court’s experience of its distinctive value.” Case in point: the court has indicated that, even if one side to an appeal gains permission to appear remotely, the other side will not be excused from appearing in person. Moreover, for the first time the court has opted to use videoconferencing (rather than audioconferencing) for remote appearances “unless the court directs otherwise.” Here are highlights from the protocols along with the text of today’s announcement.
Late yesterday afternoon, the Federal Circuit announced that the court will be closed today, in honor of the newly-created Juneteenth National Independence Day. Notably, the court highlighted that all filing deadlines for today are now due on Monday, June 21. Here is the text of the announcement.
Yesterday afternoon the Federal Circuit announced that the court would hold its next judicial conference on April 1, 2022. In recent years the court has held its judicial conference every other year, but it canceled its conference scheduled for May, 2020 due to COVID-19. The judicial conference typically involves keynote remarks from the Chief Judge (now Chief Judge Moore) and the Supreme Court Justice assigned as the Circuit Justice for the Federal Circuit (in recent years this has been Chief Justice Roberts). Past judicial conferences have included en banc panels of Federal Circuit judges commenting on best practices for briefing and oral argument at the court, plenary panels addressing hot topics regarding the court and its jurisdiction, and breakout sessions geared toward the various areas of law under the court’s jurisdiction. Many of these panels have included Federal Circuit judges as well as judges from district courts, the Court of Federal Claims, the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, and other lower tribunals.
Here is the text of yesterday’s announcement.
This morning the Federal Circuit announced that newly-installed Chief Judge Moore (who on Saturday assumed the position of Chief Judge) has appointed seven new members of the court’s Advisory Council, including a new Chair of the Council. Here is the text of this morning’s announcement, along with a brief rundown of the new members of the Advisory Council.
Federal Circuit Announces Modified Access Restrictions for the National Court Building Through June 30, 2021
Saturday, the Federal Circuit announced modified access restrictions to the National Courts Building due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Notably, effective today the court is accessible to litigants and “any other parties who will be physically present in the courthouse because of their participation in a scheduled hearing that day.” In other words, it appears the court will return to in-person oral arguments. Here is the text of this weekend’s announcement.
This morning, the Federal Circuit announced another extension of access restrictions to the National Courts Building, this one lasting until May 31, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Here is the text of this morning’s announcement.
Update (April 21, 2021 at 3:30 pm):
The Federal Circuit issued a revised announcement changing only the date of Judge Moore’s succession, from May 21 to May 22.
This afternoon the Federal Circuit announced that one month from today, on May 21, 2021, Judge Moore will succeed Judge Prost as the Chief Judge of the Federal Circuit. The court highlighted that Judge Prost will continue to serve the court as an active judge following the conclusion of her term as Chief Judge. Notably, Judge Prost has served as the court’s Chief Judge since May 31, 2014, and so she will step down from her position as Chief Judge ten days short of the full seven-year term allowed by statute. Here is the text of today’s announcement, which includes a link to a more full description of the transition.
The Federal Circuit announced today that, beginning next month and until the courthouse reopens, the court will offer live audio streaming of all of its oral arguments on the court’s YouTube channel rather than via publicly-accessible telephone conference calls. Here is the text from today’s announcement.
This morning, the Federal Circuit and the Court of Federal Claims issued a joint order extending limitations on access to the Federal Courts Building through April 30, 2021. The Federal Circuit also issued a notice with additional information related to the order. Here is the text from the court’s notice.