North Dakota court to resume in-person oral arguments
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The North Dakota Supreme Court plans to resume in-person oral arguments in June.
The Bismarck Tribune reported Tuesday that in-person arguments will be subject to parties agreeing to appear physically. If either party wants to appear remotely the proceedings will be conducted entirely electronically.
District courts will still have discretion to conduct proceedings remotely. Chief Justice Jon Jensen said some courts may decide to increase in-person appearances but available facilities and local restrictions will dictate how proceedings are conducted.
The Supreme Court also is considering making some pandemic protocols permanent, such as allowing defendants to plead guilty to Class C felonies in writing without appearing in court.
The justices have met in-person occasionally for case conferences, but they haven’t met for any hearings, according to State Court Administrator Sally Holewa. Justice Gerald VandeWalle, 87, was hospitalized due to COVID-19 twice last summer.