This is my office for the foreseeable future. I’m fine! (Even if I look bummed in this picture.) But this is our new normal, for now, apparently. Calls to 864-406-6755 are being forwarded to my cellphone. Email is the quickest way to get a quick message to me: firstname.lastname@example.org – or you can message me on Instagram (@attorneyjamesthomas).
What about court?
This afternoon the South Carolina Supreme Court issued several orders regarding the postponement of certain court dates statewide. You can find them now at the front page of www.sccourts.org and I’m sure more updates will come. Some key bits of importance to my clients (and potential clients): “All jury trials are postponed,” “all roll calls and any other large gatherings such as traffic court are cancelled until further notice,” and “bench warrants for failure to appear shall not be issued at this time.”
What about bond hearings? Or people in jail?
Magistrate courts are instructed to continue to conduct bond hearings for folks that have just been arrested at least once per day. Circuit courts appear to have the ability to schedule other court dates, such as bond review hearings, hearings on bench warrant recall motions, and plea hearings for people in jail who would be released upon disposition of their case “as is necessary and prudent,” but I am guessing they have to do so in a way that complies with the directive to avoid “large gatherings.”
What about my traffic ticket?
(Or other kind of ticket?)
Although the order says that “large gatherings such as traffic court are cancelled,” the phrase “traffic court” isn’t really a term of art in South Carolina. Do they mean literally every docket with a traffic offense on it? What about the city courts that conduct pretrial conferences? What about smaller traffic court dockets that may only have a half-dozen cases? When does a docket, “traffic” or otherwise, become a “large gathering?” What about ordinance violations that aren’t technically traffic offenses? What about possession of #marijuana tickets that get filed in with traffic dockets? I think it’s going to be necessary to contact individual courts directly to get clarity on what’s happening with your ticket.
What about courts in Spartanburg, specifically?
Spartanburg Municipal Court has postponed jury trial dockets on April 14 and April 15. Spartanburg Magistrate Court has postponed jury trial dockets for March 24-25 and April 7-8. That’s all I’m certain of right now, but I’ll try to update this post when I learn more.
Can you help me?
Contact me through any of the ways I mentioned above or through the contact form on my website (click “Contact” at the top of this page), and I’m happy to conduct a free consultation about your criminal, DUI, or traffic court case, as I always am. If you’d prefer to video conference, we can make that happen. If you would like to retain me for your case, I can email you a contract that you will be able to e-sign from your phone or computer (or I can mail you one the old-fashioned way). I can take card payments over the phone or send you a link to pay online. I will work to get your court date postponed. I will make sure that the court knows I’m your attorney of record so that I can call you when your court date gets rescheduled (instead of you having to worry about losing your summons in the mail). If they won’t postpone court, in most cases I should still be able to personally appear on your behalf and waive your presence so you can stay home.
For now, stay home if possible.
And don’t hesitate to give me a call if you need me. I’m happy to talk. A little time just got freed up on my calendar.