The Coronavirus has caused just about every sort of business to shut down or the past couple of months. This includes the family courts in South Carolina. People who had divorces pending or who were waiting to determine child custody are becoming more than frustrated. Thankfully, the Clerk of Court offered some hope this week about the courts’ reopening.
According to Clerk Richard Shirley, they expect to start scheduling family law cases as soon as June 15, 2020. They know that the courts are essentially closed until June 12, 2020. They are only scheduling emergency hearings for matters that concern the welfare of children or a domestic violence issue.
One of the biggest complaints people have had are about unpaid child support. The clerk said not to worry. He explained that these matters are still being handled via the computer. When people become delinquent on their support, the court will notify them. And, they will start scheduling court appearances for people soon.
For other matters, such as divorce hearings, custody hearings and child support hearings, expect them to start being held starting mid-June. The good news is that the family courts expect to open much sooner than the criminal or civil courts. For people who have been waiting to learn the outcome of their family law matter, there is some light at the end of the tunnel.
Up until now, very few hearings have been held. And those that have taken place have done so via online hearings or CCTV. This is the only way the courts can ensure the safety of their staff and the parties.
If you’re wondering when you can file your divorce petition or schedule a hearing, contact our office right away. The courts do promise that things will return to normal slowly but surely.