UPDATE: COVID-19 Effect On Civil Litigation


allie humphreys

Alexandra “Allie” E. Humphreys




UPDATE: On May 6, 2020, the Virginia Supreme Court (SCOVA) entered an order extending the current judicial emergency (discussed in our previous blog posts) through June 7, 2020. Like the previous Emergency Declaration orders, the May 6 Order tolls statutes of limitation and other case-related deadlines for the period of the judicial emergency (now through June 7). However, the May 6 Order provides an exception for discovery, ordering the tolling of discovery deadlines in civil cases to terminate on May 18, 2020. In practice, this means that all civil discovery with a deadline that fell between March 16 and May 18 is now due within 21 days of May 18. The May 6 Order also authorizes individual state courts, in their discretion, to resume in-person, non-emergency civil hearings where it is deemed safe. However, the May 6 Order takes a hardline stance on jury trials, forbidding all jury trials through June 7. As with the previous Emergency Declaration Orders from SCOVA, the May 6 order left open the possibility for the judicial emergency period to be further extended.