Federal Courts Treating Vaccinated and Unvaccinated Litigants Differently
During the early days of the pandemic, most federal courts shut down, and moved all proceedings online. In the past few months, many courts have opened up, and began to hold jury trials. Even if courthouse require mask mandates, individual judges had the option to waive those requirements for jury trials. (And I am reliably informed that some judges have given litigants and jurors that discretion). Now with the Delta surge, courts are imposing new restrictions.
Last week, the Tenth Circuit barred unvaccinated people from entering the courthouse in Denver. They also cannot go to the clerk’s office. They must drop off files in a dropbox near the entrance. And, unvaccinated attorneys must seek leave of court to argue a case via video. Presumably, that leave can be denied. This policy does not seem to have any exceptions for disabilities. There are some people who cannot receive the vaccine. For example, those with severe allergic reaction
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