Judiciary of Guam issues guidance under new restrictions, all court facilities closed to public

Judiciary of Guam (file photo)

The Judiciary of Guam issued the following guidance, effective 8:00 A.M., Friday, August 21, 2020:

  1. All court facilities— including the Guam Judicial Center in Hagåtña, the San
    Ramon Temporary Courtroom in Hagåtña, the Northern Court Satellite in
    Dededo, the offices of the Probation Services Division, and the Judicial Education
    Center—shall be closed to the general public until further notice, except where
    entry is necessary to address essential matters that cannot be resolved remotely
    (i.e., by telephone, videoconference, email, or comparable means, or through the
    electronic filing system) because it is not practicable or would contravene the
    protection of constitutional rights. Essential court operations shall continue at the
    Guam Judicial Center in Hagåtña.

  2. The following essential matters shall continue to be scheduled and heard in
    keeping with the urgency of those matters and consistent with statutory
    requirements either in person as provided in paragraph 1. above or remotely by
    video conferencing or telephonic appearance, with the court to notify all
    participants necessary to the proceeding:
    a. Magistrate proceedings;
    b. Preliminary hearings for detained juveniles;
    c. Hearings for temporary orders of custody requested by Child Protective
    d. Civil protection orders;
    e. Temporary restraining orders when necessary for the protection of the safety
    and welfare of a person or persons;
    f. Search warrants
    g. Warrant returns;
    h. Emergency guardianships;
    i. Quarantine and isolation petitions and related proceedings;
    j. Other court proceedings under the Emergency Health Powers Act codified in
    Title 10, Chapter 19 of the Guam Code Annotated; and
    k. Any other locally or federally mandated hearings.

  3. All other scheduled in-person and virtual/remote hearings with the Supreme Court
    of Guam and the Superior Court of Guam not referenced in paragraph 2. above will
    be cancelled until further notice.

  4. All court essential employees currently reporting to work at the Judiciary of Guam
    will be released on Friday, August 21, 2020, by 12:00 P.M. The Judiciary of Guam
    will continue to operate with a skeletal crew of employees necessary for essential
    operations and services consistent with the Governor of Guam’s Executive Order
    issued on August 21, 2020.

  5. Members of the public or media with inquiries regarding the Judiciary of Guam
    should contact the Public Information Officer, Kristina (Tina) Blaz, by email at

  6. An updated Administrative Order by the Supreme Court of Guam further
    addressing the judicial administration of the courts, including operations and
    services, is forthcoming and will be issued to the public.

(News Release from the Judiciary of Guam)