COVID – 19 UPDATE
During this period of unprecedented uncertainty, please rest assured that
the Blumenthal Law Offices remain open and available to assist both current
and new clients as they navigate the criminal justice system. The criminal
courts and associated attorneys have been declared “essential personnel”
and are exempt from the state and federal closure orders that have thus
far been issued.
Our office has taken affirmative steps to ensure the safety of our clients
as this pandemic emergency unfolds. While the office itself remains open,
we have made adjustments to allow our staff to work from home when and
if necessary. We are encouraging our clients to communicate by phone or
email where possible, and we have increased our cleaning regimen to prevent
the spread of the coronavirus through surface contact.
For the safety of our employees and the inmates of the local jail systems,
we have taken the additional step of suspending visits to the jail facilities.
However, as always, we accept collect calls from jail inmates to discuss
matters, and direct calls to our offices from jail are not recorded or
monitored, allowing for confidential attorney-client communication in
most situations. We will make adjustments to this visitation policy if
and when needed, but so far it has not been an issue.
The Inland Empire courts are slowly returning to normal (or “new-normal”)
operations as of June 1st. In San Bernardino, it appears that cases will
return to their normal scheduling. We will be reaching out to our clients
to advise them if they have upcoming dates where their attendance is required.
In Riverside, however, the courts are initially open only for continued
“emergency” operations and a very limited Master Calendar
which will be used to address
only those case with impending jury trial dates. These Master Calendar appearances
are being scheduled by the court, but do require an appearance by the
defendant. We will continue to communicate with those clients in order
to alert them to the scheduled dates as we receive notice. On June 15th,
however, the Riverside court will be fully open for all business, including
The courts have put in place certain requirements and protocols in an attempt
to minimize the spread of the novel coronavirus within the courthouses.
These requirements vary from location to location, and courtroom to courtroom.
It is a safe bet that 1) masks will be required in common spaces, 2) the
fewer the people attending court the better, and 3) strict social distancing
will be required. If you are required to attend court, please allow extra
time for movement within the courthouse and to acquaint yourself with
the specific rules in place for that appearance. And while we have the
highest respect for the legal and constitutional rights of our clients,
we also respect the interest of the courts in protecting their staff and
those that share the space within the courthouses. Should we feel that
a specific requirement will directly impinge upon the rights of a given
client, we will vigorously defend that right and attempt to resolve the
issue with the court. Barring such a circumstance, we expect our clients
to abide by the courts’ rules, regulations, and orders.
We expect that there will be some confusion and uncertainty in the coming
weeks as each court works out the kinks in their individual systems. We
will work to communicate all necessary updates to affected clients as
we receive them from the court. If questions arise, though, please do
not hesitate to reach out to us directly. We continue to keep our doors
open, our office staffed, and our phones answered, as we have throughout
this pandemic emergency. Please contact us directly with any concerns
or issues related to your case, the court requirements, or anything else
on which we may be of service.
For more information on Covid-19, including the latest news from courts
in Riverside and San Bernardino, visit:
California Coronavirus Response
Riverside Superior Court
San Bernardino Superior Court