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What will happen to the wheels of justice during COVID-19: Part II

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What will happen to the wheels of justice during COVID-19: Part II

Consequent to the announcements of 23 March 2020, the following directives have been issued:

 

In Cape Town

  1. Only urgent matters or applications including matter relating to COVID-19, bail hearings, urgent maintenance, domestic violence-related matters and those involving children, will be heard.
  2. Issuing of civil summons and applications is to be suspended.
  3. No trials are to take place during the lockdown period including on the day of 17 April 2020.
  4. All trials set down during the lockdown period will be re-enrolled after this period.
  5. No warrants of execution will be issued during the lockdown period.
  6. Finally, the high court building will not be accessible during the lockdown period, except for the relevant duty judges and their staff.

In Johannesburg:

  1. Urgent applications will be held via teleconferencing/video conferencing, papers will be uploaded electronically via a pilot program initiated in the Johannesburg high court.
  2. If parties believe a matter is urgent, the counsel or the attorney who is to appear must sign a certificate to that effect.
  3. If a matter is enrolled and it is found that the matter is not urgent, there will be a punitive costs order made and the attorney or counsel who brought the urgent application will be prevented from recovering any fees in that matter.
  4. Again, no access is allowed to the high court building in Johannesburg.
  5. Eviction applications to declare properties executable will be suspended until after the lockdown period.