How does the Covid-19 pandemic affect a defendant’s speedy trial rights in D.C.?

Jefferson Memorial

Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the time between March 18 and November 9, 2020 will be “tolled.” In other words, it will not count when calculating whether a defendant’s speedy trial rights have been violated.

Paying D.C. court costs, fees and fines during Covid-19 pandemic

D.C. Superior Court Sign - Where to Pay Fees

With the D..C. Superior Court finance office now closed because of the Covid-19 pandemic, courts costs, fines and fees can now be paid online or by mail.

Can I represent myself at a CPO hearing in DC?

Yes. You have the right to represent yourself in a legal matter. In fact, although virtually all defendants in a criminal case will be represented by a lawyer, parties at most restraining order hearings are acting pro se; that is, they are representing themselves.

What should I bring with me to a CPO hearing in D.C.?

Washington DC Memorials re: CPO hearing

Although it is often helpful to have physical evidence to corroborate your version of events, the only thing you absolutely need to bring to a restraining order hearing in D.C. is yourself.

Obtaining a restraining order during the Covid-19 pandemic

Lincoln and Washington monuments

With D.C. Superior Court now closed because of the Covid-19 pandemic, Civil Protection Orders (CPOs), Temporary Protection Orders (TPOs) and other forms of restraining orders must be obtained remotely.

Presenting your best self at a virtual hearing

Baltimore graffiti

I am nosy. I am also a snob. I am curious what people choose to display in the background behind them during virtual hearings.

An interloper on the SCTLA listserv

D.C. criminal defense attorney

The judge issues the order on the very same day that I complain publicly on the SCTLA listserv. On a Saturday. After sitting on the motion for over 9 months.

Bianca Forde: The view from her side of the courtroom

Bianca Ford

The photograph depicts Bianca Forde sitting in a New York criminal courtroom. In this courtroom, however, she is sitting at the defense table. She is in casual clothes. And she is looking pretty unhappy.

My claim to fame

criminal defense attorney

This website is my claim to fame at D.C. Superior Court. It is not my commanding courtroom presence or my oral advocacy skills. It is not even my good looks. It is this website.

Starting a criminal defense practice after Covid

D.C. criminal defense practice - graffiti image

The changes now being effected in response to the pandemic — specifically the trend toward on-line hearings — could pose challenges for new lawyers seeking to start criminal defense practices in D.C.