COVID-19: Government agencies are open, and so are we.

On March 19, 2020, California Governor, Gavin Newsom declared a “Stay at Home” Order due to the rapid outbreak of a new strain of coronavirus, or COVID-19, which was first detected in China and which has now been detected in more than 100 locations internationally, including in the United States. With California being a densely populated state, this order was issued to prevent the rapid spread of the virus and pressure it may create on our healthcare system.

What is the “Stay at Home” Order in California?

The “Stay at Home” Order, which went into effect on Thursday, March 19, 2020, and is in place until further notice in California, states that only essential services will remain open.

The order states: “All individuals living in the State of California [must] stay home or at their place of residence, except as needed to maintain continuity of operation of…critical government services, schools, childcare, and construction.”

Essential services include: 

  • State and local government functions, including law enforcement and offices that provide government programs and services, including courthouses
  • Food: Grocery stores, farmers markets, food banks, convenience stores, take-out and delivery restaurants
  • Gas stations
  • Pharmacies
  • Banks
  • Laundromats/laundry service

How does the “Stay at Home” Order Affect Legal Services? 

The Courts: “essential” services:

Although COVID-19 has caused a wave of closures in many industries, the “Stay at Home” Order does not directly affect the court system or other governing agencies in California, as the courts and government are considered essential services, as noted above by the State of California. 

While some courts are running at limited capacity or closed to the public, essential services are still operating.

Our Law Office: Attorney Prep Work: Case Review, Drafting, and More

In addition, estate planning documents require prep work by an attorney. For example, services such as a Durable Power of Attorney, Living Trust, and others requires having an attorney draft the necessary documents, which takes time in order to be done right.

This additional prep work means that for those government offices such as the Clerk Recorder who have stricter restrictions, our office can still do much of this leg work and file promptly as soon as services resume in full swing, thus ensuring that your case is completed in a timely manner. Choosing to wait will mean your case may have further delays since this prep work will still be required. 

Resources to Help You During the Filing of Your Case:

As the courts operate on a first come, first serve basis, we will have to wait on the district attorney and judge to make a decision. In the interim of waiting on these agents, we offer resources to help you maintain your employment and/or secure employment such as the following: 

Open Line of Communication

If you are concerned about the status of your case, our team is here to help and relay any updates we obtain from the court. Your online account will be updated periodically throughout the process and, should you have additional questions, our team is prepared.

Reach Out to Our Team for More Solutions to Your Problems

Again, since this is a developing situation, time is of the essence and we suggest beginning right away. South Coast Estate Plans is a division of the Law Firm of Shea M. Randall, a trusted California Law Firm. We are a full service, client-focused law firm located in Southern California that specializes in designing sophisticated California Wills, Revocable Living Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Advanced Health Care Directives, and More.

Our team can be reached by filing out the contact form below or by calling our office at (949) 471-0136

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