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Ontario courts urged to limit in-person proceedings in light of new COVID-19 measures

Ontario’s courts have been instructed to limit in-person proceedings as much as possible in light of the province’s new COVID-19 restrictions.

The heads of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice and the Ontario Court of Justice have issued statements saying matters should be conducted remotely unless it is absolutely necessary to proceed in person.

New jury trials and jury selection will also stay suspended until early May at the earliest.

The chief justice of the Superior Court, Geoffrey B. Morawetz, says in his statement that jury trials currently underway can continue at the discretion of the presiding judge.

The notices come as Ontario is poised to enact an order requiring residents to stay at home except for essential activities.

The stay-at-home order is part of a series of new restrictions announced this week as the province declared a second state of emergency due to the pandemic.
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