Dec. 30, 2020
Johnson City Juvenile Court announces COVID-19 procedures for January 2021
The Tennessee Supreme Court has suspended in-person court proceedings, except for certain types of cases, in all courts from Dec. 28, 2020, through Jan. 29, 2021. The Johnson City Juvenile Court has put in place the following procedures to comply with the Tennessee Supreme Court Order while continuing to conduct hearings:
- In cases of emergency dependency and neglect, it will continue to have in-person emergency hearings in this type of hearings. The in-person attendance for the emergency hearings will be limited to parents/custodians, the Guardian ad Litem, the Department of Children’s Services case manager, and attorneys. Any witness will remain outside the Juvenile Court building until he or she is called inside to testify.
- No children less than 14 years old will be admitted to the Johnson City Juvenile Court building during this period. Children older than 14 years old will not be admitted except for detention hearings.
- Any non-emergency cases which are currently scheduled during January, 2021, will be conducted through audio/visual conferencing means using Zoom or WebEx, if email addresses are available to the Court.
- An individual may call the Clerk’s office at 423-434-6201 or 423-434-6213 at least 24 hours before the scheduled hearing to provide his/her current email address. The individual should be prepared to give the Clerk the name of the child whom the hearing is about, along with the date and time of the scheduled hearing.
- Juvenile Court has been obtaining email addresses as a part of our revised in-take procedure for several months, and will use the email addresses it has on file in sending invitations through Zoom or WebEx. If an individual has an attorney, the invitation will be sent to the attorney for forwarding to their client.
- If an individual does not have an email address or internet, he or she may participate in their hearing via telephone, by calling 423-434-6201 or 423-434-6213 at the time of the hearing.
- Johnson City Juvenile Court will remain open, but citizens are asked to conduct business via phone or through email to the extent possible. All persons must call the front counter at 423-434-6211 before they enter the building and must have their temperature taken upon entering.
- For those who must conduct business in person, individuals must stand behind a yellow line located at least 10 feet from the front counter until they are called to the front window to conduct business.
- A drop-off area is located on a table in the lobby which is approximately 10 feet away from the front counter so that members of the public can turn in information without having direct contact with the clerical employees at the front window.
- Individuals who seek to file a petition without an attorney may still receive assistance from an intake officer but they must call 423-434-6211 before entering the building. The intake officer will meet the individual who seeks to file a pro se petition (without an attorney) outside in the parking lot.
- To further reduce the number of persons in the court building, the probation staff will be conducting most probation meetings over the phone, interacting with both youth and parent on a regularly scheduled basis.