Lawsuits (Civil Cases)
Most in-person jury trials are suspended.
Trials for non-jury lawsuits of $15,000 or less can be held by phone and videoconference if the parties consent. The parties also can try to settle the case without trial.
Read the May 15 Notice to the Bar for more information.
Small Claims under $3,000.
Most in-person trials for small claims cases are on hold until at least July 26. Judges can conduct virtual trials if the parties consent.
Special Civil cases under $15,000
Many people do not respond to lawsuits for unpaid bills and other money problems. This is called a default. Plaintiffs in those cases automatically win the case if the defendant defaults. Automatic defaults are suspended through July 26.
Medical and Professional Malpractice
The deadlines for filing affidavits of merit in medical and professional malpractice cases has been extended through July 26.
Phase 2 Post-Pandemic Plan
Beginning June 22, some civil cases could be handled in person. Those include:
- Civil jury trials that were suspended due to COVID-19. All parties must agree to resume the trial onsite and the Chief Justice must approve.
- Bench trials and hearings in criminal matters that are too complex to handle online.
See the June 10 Notice to the Bar for more details on the Phase 2 post-pandemic plan.
See our Self-Help Center for filing help. Self-represented litigants can file documents for most lawsuits through the Judiciary Electronic Document Submission (JEDS) system.
Attorneys must use eCourts for:
- Foreclosure / General Equity
- Civil Law
- Special Civil DC
- Family Children in Court dockets (FN, FG, FC, FL)
- Tax Court
- Appellate Division
Attorneys must use JEDS for:
- Chancery / General Equity
- Special Civil Landlord / Tenant
- Special Civil Small Claims
- Family Dissolution (FM)
- Family Non-dissolution (FD)
- Family Domestic Violence (FV and FO)
Discovery deadlines after March 16 were extended through May 10.
Courtesy Copies of Civil Court Filings
The requirement that the parties must provide courtesy copies of their court filings is suspended through July 26. Courtesy copies are still required if the submission is more than 35 pages long.
Request extension for an individual case
Many things can affect lawyer or litigant’s ability to proceed with each case. You can request an extension without a formal motion by submitting a letter. Read Court Rule 1:1-2(a) for information about when the court might be able to grant an extensions.
Arbitration in civil cases
These court events are taking place by phone or video conference. You will receive a court notice if an arbitration session is scheduled.
Sending notices to parties
The court has extended the time period for sending some types of notices to other parties. This includes summonses in response to track assignment notices. It also includes notices of tort claims.
See our Self-Help Center for more information.