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Category Archives: NEWS

When will Courts Reopen?

We would love to use this Blog entry to give you an update as to when courts will reopen, when defendants can face trial or resolve matters, when domestic situations can be worked out or at least litigated before a judge, when property disputes can be settled, damages ordered, and wills and estates clarified and settled and closed.  But, frankly, we just don’t know. What we can say, with some confidence, is that we are close.

North Carolina’s Chief Justice Cheri Beasley has engaged a Task Force (made up of district and superior court judges, DAs, Public Defenders and private attorneys) to handle the soft Court resumption date of June 1, and what that will look like.  The Task Force is working on how calendar backlogs will be caught up, large calendars managed while maintaining relative social distancing in the courthouse, handling of inmates to and from court, document and exhibit handling in the courtroom, and interaction with and between district attorneys, judges, clerks, bailiffs, and attorneys.  Juries are of course one of the most tricky issues to address. The grand jury (juries tasked to determine the existence of probable cause sufficient to indict a felony case) and the petite jury (juries summoned to sit and hear trials and find facts, usually in small stuffy rooms with a single toilet) are by their very nature sequestered bodies. We will keep you posted as soon as the Chief Justice releases the more defined findings and game plan from the Task Force (likely this week). Please understand, our clients in Craven might have a very different situation than our client in Carteret, Pamlico, or Jones—all counties are likely to put their own fingerprint on the Task Force’s recommendations.  Indeed, no two counties have the same physical facilities that are so determinative on how safe distancing will be navigated while the work of the courts is achieved.

Regardless, even now, be mindful of the following: 

  1. If you have matters pending before the court, particularly  of a criminal nature, it is a good time to get a very reasonable result in your case where there will be a priority on moving cases, so make sure your attorney has everything they need to resolve your case;
  2. Check with your attorney before going to their office or the Courthouse, even after June 1—you might not need to go (but check!) and spare yourself and others any risk to keep the curb flat or declining; and,
  3. Our courthouse personnel (be it Judges, bailiffs, clerks, DAs) are on the front lines of human interaction every day, trying to process aspects of your case and thousands of others. So be as respectful and polite as ever. They are putting themselves at risk to keep our society orderly and moving forward. 

Thank you and be safe. 

Tom Wilson

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The Places Jaheim Will Go

This is the time of year when typically, bookstores cannot keep Dr. Seuss’s iconic and timeless tale Oh, the places You’ll Go on the shelves.  They are, for good reason, a go to gift for a young high school graduate setting out to face adulthood and all the peaks and valleys that come with “growing up.”  Who knows if the Covid-19 pandemic is impeding sales like it is impeding everything else (someone certainly does know this)?  What is clear is that more than hearing about the places we will go these days, we hear about places we physically can’t go (at least for the near future…and also for good reason).  One such place is a gathering of friends and loved ones at high school gyms, fields, or commons for graduation ceremonies.  This pandemic hits us all, but for children and young adults crossing from one rite of passage to the next in short succession, the pandemic denies (or attempts to) some of the most meaningful times of a life.  But for someone like Jaheim Webster, the pandemic is just another small blip on the arch of a young man propelling towards hard fought, well-earn success.

So who is Jaheim? Jaheim is the first recipient of the Greene Wilson Crow Scholarship.  He will be a graduate of New Bern High School, Class of 2020, and is headed off to UNC-Charlotte (with more college credits than most juniors have).  He is a young man dedicated to community service and academics, all while maintaining employment, a magnetic personality, and perfect hair.  Jaheim is someone who has overcome adversity throughout his life through perseverance, fortitude, and a genuine, positive attitude.  We at Greene Wilson & Crow are so proud of Jaheim, and honored to, in this small way, help all of his dreams come true.  He is going places (pandemic be damned) and we expect you will hear more about him, on this BLOG and beyond!

    

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Travel Laws and Reminders

Synonymous with summer time is traveling, whether it’s for vacation or to visit family the warmer weather always leads to more people on the road. This makes it the perfect time to review travel laws and other reminders for instate, interstate or international travel.

Instate

For our North Carolina natives it’s sometimes easy to forget the rules of the road we use almost everyday. Before you click your seatbelt be sure to set your phone to silent or connect to blue tooth, because texting and driving isn’t just against the law it’s also dangerous to yourself and others on the road. When driving on the highway be aware of police and emergency vehicles stopped on the shoulder with their lights flashing. Give them enough space and switch lanes if possible or slow down as you pass. It is just as courteous to the people stopped as it is following the law.

Interstate

Another tip before you hit the road is to check other states rules and regulations regarding driving. Cell phone laws and others vary from state to state, it is always in good practice to check your destination and drive through states Department of Transportation website before leaving.

Everywhere drinking and driving is illegal. Buzzed driving is drunk driving, so if you do plan to drink be sure to have a designated driver, or ride- share app such as Uber or Lyft on hand. The extra dollars spent paying for a driver is well worth it so that yourself and others aren’t put at risk.

International

Flying transcontinental is a big deal, and with flying comes even more polices to help protect you on your journey. Remembering to get Passports and Visas in order long before you depart is a key step. It can take several months for the documentation to process for getting a passport or visa, and leaving it to the last minute may delay your travel plans. If you are renting a car upon arrival check to see if an international driving permit is required. In some places holding a valid U.S license doesn’t cover the requirements needed to drive in that country. As always check the State Department website regarding any travel warnings or restrictions to your area, as well as TSA guidelines for baggage before you pack.

The best part about summer is vacation, and all of us here at GreeneWilsonCrow want you to have a happy, safe and fun one.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, please contact GreeneWilsonCrow Attorneys at Law by calling (252) 634-9400 or visiting 

 

(Sources: News & Observer, U.S State Department, NCDOT, BACtrack, North Carolina General Assembly) 

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