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  4.  » Special Edition: What You Need to Know About the Updated Mask Policy in NYS Court System

New York State’s court system announced last week that it will be relaxing its mask  policy in accordance with the mask and physical distancing guidance implemented by the Center  for Disease Control and Prevention and New York State Department of Health for individuals  fully vaccinated against COVID-19. 

Under the new guidance effective on Wednesday, July 14th, 2021, the United Court System  will now issue passes to fully vaccinated attorneys, personnel, and all other parties, who can  provide proof of vaccination, permitting them to enter our court facilities without completing a  health safety screening and without wearing a mask or face covering. 

Once issued, the Visitor or Attorney/Agency pass must be worn on the outermost piece of  clothing at all times while in the court facility. Attorneys or staff of public or private agencies  who regularly conduct business inside court facilities and have a valid secure pass or valid  office/agency ID Card along with proof of vaccine may apply for the 90-day pass. Please speak  to a Court Officer for details about the policy and to obtain your pass. 

Unvaccinated court visitors (or those who do not have proof of vaccination) are required  to submit to health safety screening which includes body temperature check and a COVID-19  risk assessment inquiry before entering the facility. They will also be required to wear a mask,  maintain social distancing, and follow the health and safety instructions of court personnel. 

Be advised, you Should NOT enter a courthouse if you: 

  • Have flu-like symptoms;  
  • Have recently tested positive for COVID, or have been directed to quarantine, isolate  or self-monitor at home for the coronavirus by any doctor, hospital, or health agency; 
  • Have recently had close contact with a person testing positive for COVID (unless you  are fully vaccinated or have recently recovered from COVID*); or 
  • Have returned from international travel within the last 10 days (unless you returned 8- 10 days ago and took a viral COVID test 3-5 days after your return**). 
*If you are covered by this close contact exemption, please be prepared to provide proof of  vaccination or recent recovery from COVID. 
** If you are covered by this exemption, please be prepared to provide proof of your test results. 

Judges, non-judicial personnel, and frequent court visitors must continue to follow all  other safety and operational protocols. Anyone, including fully vaccinated judges, employees, and other court users, may continue to wear masks in court facilities if they so choose. Please  Note: The guidelines listed here are subject to amendment in accordance with changing directives of State and federal health authorities. You can count on The Law Offices of  Marjory Cajoux, to diligently keep you informed of the latest developments. We are ready and  committed to inform, support, and serve you in the areas of immigration, real estate, estate, and  business planning, as well as personal injury (WTC claims). 

Additional Resources: 

NY State Court System Loosens Mask Policy for Staff Members, Judges COVID

Screening Protocol for Entering a Courthouse