COVID-19 and the Kentucky Courts

The Judicial Branch provides essential, constitutionally mandated services for the public. While this requires business to continue during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are taking every possible step to minimize risk. We are continually making changes that will ensure access to the courts while protecting the health and safety of court personnel and the public.

“I appreciate the hard work and determination of the public, the legal community and court personnel who are quickly adapting to these changes,” Chief Justice of Kentucky John D. Minton Jr. said. “As difficult as these restrictions may be, the Judicial Branch must do its part to practice stringent social distancing while providing essential, constitutionally mandated services. The health and safety of all of us depend on it.”

We’ve escalated the Judicial Branch response to COVID-19 as the need for social distancing has become even more critical. Please see the Supreme Court orders, news releases and other documents on the right side of this page for details. This information will also be available on our Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Court System Preparedness & Response

Supreme Court Order 2021-03, Jan. 12, 2021 (Replaces Administrative Order 2020-66) Work Alternatives for High-Risk Employees and Asymptomatic COVID Testing Leave for Kentucky Court of Justice Employees in a Pandemic or Public Health Emergency

Supreme Court Order 2021-02, Jan. 6, 2021 (Replaces Administrative Order 2020-72) Kentucky Court of Justice Response to COVID-19 Emergency: Court Proceedings

Supreme Court Order 2021-01, Jan. 6, 2021 (Replaces Administrative Order 2020-71) Kentucky Court of Justice Response to COVID-19 Emergency - Health and Safety Requirements

Supreme Court Order 2020-77, Dec. 17, 2020 (Amends Administrative Order 2020-67, dated Sept. 25, 2020) Amended Emergency Release Schedule and Pretrial Drug Testing Standards

Administrative Order 2020-66, Sept. 25, 2020 (Amends Administrative Order 2020-58, Aug. 7, 2020) Amended Emergency Release Schedule and Pretrial Drug Testing Standards

Administrative Order 2020-65, Sept. 15, 2020 (Amends Administrative Order 2020-46, dated May 29, 2020) Custody and Parenting Time Orders

Supreme Court Order 2020-64, Aug. 28, 2020: Kentucky Court of Justice Response to COVID-19 Emergency: Expansion of Court Proceedings (Amends Supreme Court Order 2020-56, dated July 27, 2020)

Supreme Court Order 2020-63, Aug. 28, 2020: Kentucky Court of Justice Response to COVID-19 Emergency: Health and Safety Requirements (Amends Supreme Court Order 2020-55, dated July 27, 2020)

Administrative Order 2020-62, Aug. 21, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-62 was entered Aug. 21, 2020, to amend Order 2020-59.) Jefferson County Eviction Diversion Pilot Project

Administrative Order 2020-61, Aug. 17, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-61 was entered Aug. 17, 2020, to amend Order 2020-50.) Administration of 2020 Bar Examination

Administrative Order 2020-60, Aug. 17, 2020: Amendments to the Rules of the Supreme Court

Administrative Order 2020-47, May 29, 2020 (Replaces in its entirety Administrative Order 2020-23, dated April 14, 2020) Flexible Staffing Guidelines for Court Clerks in a Pandemic or Public Health Emergency

Administrative Order, May 20, 2020: Extension of Continuing Judicial Education Reporting Deadline and Waiver of Limitation on Recorded Activities

Administrative Order, May 19, 2020: Kentucky Court of Justice Response to COVID-19 Emergency: Expansion of Court Proceedings

Administrative Order May 15, 2020: Kentucky Court of Justice Response to COVID-19 Emergency - Health and Safety Requirements for the Expansion of Court Operations

Administrative Order May 14, 2020: Kentucky Court of Justice Hiring Policy

Administrative Order May 5, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-32, dated May 5, 2020, replaces in its entirety Administrative Order 2020-14, dated March 27, 2020.) Custody and Parenting Time Orders

Administrative Order April 30, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-31, dated April 30, 2020, replaces in its entirety Administrative Order 2020-15, dated March 31, 2020.) Deadline for Reporting Continuing Legal Education Activities

Administrative Order April 28, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-29, dated April 28, 2020, replaces in its entirety Administrative Order 2020-17, dated April 1, 2020.) Extension of Filing Deadlines for Supreme Court of Kentucky and Kentucky Court of Appeals

Administrative Order April 24, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-28, dated April 24, 2020, replaces in its entirety Administrative Order 2020-22, dated April 14, 2020.) Kentucky Court of Justice Response to COVID-19 Emergency

Administrative Order April 23, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-27, dated April 23, 2020, replaces in its entirety Administrative Order 2020-25, dated April 14, 2020.) Kentucky Court of Justice Emergency Release Schedule for Pretrial Defendants and Emergency Pretrial Drug Testing Standards in Response to COVID-19 Emergency

Administrative Order April 14, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-23, dated April 14, 2020, replaces in its entirety Administrative Order 2020-18, dated April 3, 2020.) Flexible Staffing Guidelines for Court Clerks in a Pandemic or Public Health Emergency

Administrative Order April 14, 2020 (Administrative Order 2020-24, dated April 14, 2020, replaces in its entirety Administrative Order 2020-20, dated April 7, 2020.) Special Emergency Directed Leave for Kentucky Court of Justice Employees in a Pandemic or Public Health Emergency

Administrative Order April 3, 2020: Amendment to the By-Laws of the Kentucky Bar Association

Administrative Order March 31, 2020: Deadline for Reporting Continuing Legal Education Activities

January 13, 2021: COVID-19 Vaccinations for Kentucky Court of Justice Personnel

January 6, 2021: Supreme Court extends restrictions on jury trials, grand juries until April 1

December 22, 2020: COVID-19 Vaccination Schedule in Kentucky

November 20, 2020: Supreme Court amends court operations statewide to address escalating COVID cases

October 29, 2020: Guidelines for COVID precautions in red zones as cases surge this fall and winter

September 25, 2020: Supreme Court amends orders related to high-risk employees emergency release schedule

September 15, 2020: Supreme Court amends Custody and Parenting Time order

September 3, 2020: Latest public entrance signs now available in 12 commonly used languages

August 28, 2020: Supreme Court enters amended orders related to in-person testimony and evictions

August 17, 2020: Supreme Court announces 2 orders related to administration of Kentucky bar exam

August 10, 2020: Supreme Court announces pilot project to reduce eviction cases in Jefferson County

August 7, 2020: Asymptomatic court employees now eligible for paid leave to obtain COVID-19 testing

July 31, 2020: Announcing changes to COVID-19 Health and Safety Requirements for court personnel

July 29, 2020: Public entrance signs updated to reflect Supreme Court orders issued July 27

July 27, 2020: Supreme Court provides new guidance on staffing access to court facilities jury trials evictions

July 21, 2020: What to do if a court employee tests positive for or is exposed

June 12, 2020: 60 day deadline for travel vouchers temporarily waived due to COVID-19 disruptions

June 9, 2020: New public entrance signs about reopening procedures now available in 12 languages

June 5, 2020: Addressing bumps in the road as we plan for Reopening Week 2

May 30, 2020: Court facilities must post new public entrance signs about reopening procedures

May 29, 2020: Supreme Court provides updates on how courts will expand services starting June 1

May 29, 2020: Circuit Court Clerks to resume limited driver's license services statewide June 1

May 19, 2020: Guidance on jury trials as courts plan to gradually expand operations June 1

May 15, 2020: Judicial Branch announces plan to resume limited in-person court services starting June 1

May 14, 2020: Announcing cost-cutting measures for Judicial Branch effective May 15 2020

May 8, 2020: Updated Facilities Closed sign announces in-person services suspended until May 31

May 6, 2020: Supreme Court extends guidance on custody and parenting time orders to May 31 2020

May 1, 2020: Reopening Task Forces will prepare courts to resume limited in-person services

April 24, 2020: Your civility and cooperation are helping us get through these trying times

April 24, 2020: Supreme Court issues additional guidance on handling court matters during pandemic

April 23, 2020: Supreme Court amends emergency release schedule clarifies that order applies only to new arrests

April 17, 2020: Taking additional steps to flatten the curve protect defendants and court partners

April 14, 2020: Supreme Court issues emergency release schedule, pretrial drug testing standards

April 14, 2020: Supreme Court extends 3 orders governing courts during pandemic to May 31

April 10, 2020: Signage Notice for Posting at Public Entrances

April 10, 2020: Message from Chief Justice In uncertain times spring is still a season of new beginnings

April 8, 2020: Social distancing more important than ever as COVID-19 cases expected to peak

April 3, 2020: Judicial Branch gets a budget courts enact more stringent social distancing measures

April 3, 2020: 50/50 staffing schedule for offices of circuit and appellate clerks

April 2, 2020: Court facilities must post 2 new public entrance signs restricting access

April 1, 2020: Supreme Court suspends in-person services at court facilities, requires court proceedings

March 31, 2020: Supreme Court order gives attorneys more time to complete continuing legal education

March 27, 2020: Thanks for another week of working together during state of emergency

March 27, 2020: Supreme Court provides guidance for custody and parenting time orders

March 26, 2020: Supreme Court issues new amendments to order limiting in-person court proceedings

March 25, 2020: Public entrance sign for court facilities now available in 9 languages

March 24, 2020: Judicial Branch is providing essential services during pandemic

March 20, 2020: Time to focus on looming COVID-19 crisis in Kentucky's overcrowded jails

March 20, 2020: Further Guidance and Sample Orders for Issuing Quarantine Orders

March 20, 2020: Chief Justice Minton sends thanks to Judicial Branch family for amazing work

March 19, 2020: Introducing 50/50 staffing schedule for offices of circuit and appellate clerks

March 17, 2020: Supreme Court issues new amendments to order restricting court proceedings during pandemic

March 17, 2020: Judicial Branch announces guide to govern personnel actions during COVID-19 outbreak

March 17, 2020: Guidance for Issuing Quarantine Orders

March 17, 2020: Driver's license offices to close by 5 p.m. March 17 for social distancing

March 17, 2020: Court personnel urged to remain calm as Judicial Branch prepares to take additional measures

March 13, 2020: Notice to post attached sign at all public entrances to your court facility

March 13, 2020: AMENDED ORDER Supreme Court places restrictions on court proceedings

March 12, 2020: Supreme Court restricts court proceedings to observe social distancing

March 11, 2020: Legal guidance on handling isolation and quarantine orders

March 11, 2020: KCOJ suspends out-of-state travel, discourages large-group meetings

March 10, 2020: Kentucky Personnel Cabinet provides protocols for state employees

March 9, 2020: Judicial Branch's response to COVID-19

February 26, 2020: Judicial Branch Preparing in event of coronavirus outbreak in Kentucky

The Supreme Court addressed the latest surge in COVID-19 cases statewide by amending two orders to limit in-person court proceedings and restrict access to judicial facilities. Administrative Order 2020-71 replaces order 2020-63 in its entirety and Administrative Order 2020-72 replaces order 2020-64 in its entirety. Both orders were effective Nov. 30, 2020, and pertain to all 120 counties.

Circuit Court

2nd Judicial Circuit: McCracken Circuit Court

4th Judicial Circuit: Hopkins Circuit, Family & District Courts

7th Judicial Circuit: Logan & Todd Circuit and District Courts

8th Judicial Circuit: Warren Circuit Court

9th Judicial Circuit: Hardin Circuit Court, Red Zone Protocol

9th Judicial Circuit: Hardin Circuit Court

10th Judicial Circuit: Hart, LaRue & Nelson Circuit Courts

11th Judicial Circuit: Green, Marion, Taylor & Washington Circuit Courts

12th Judicial Circuit: Henry, Oldham & Trimble Circuit Courts

13th Judicial Circuit: Garrard & Jessamine Circuit Courts

18th Judicial Circuit: Harrison, Nicholas, Pendleton & Robertson Circuit Courts

22nd Judicial Circuit: Fayette Circuit Court

26th Judicial Circuit: Harlan Circuit Court

28th Judicial Circuit: Lincoln, Pulaski & Rockcastle Circuit Courts

30th Judicial Circuit: Jefferson Circuit Court

33rd Judicial Circuit: Perry Circuit Court

35th Judicial Circuit: Pike Circuit Court

36th Judicial Circuit: Knott & Magoffin Circuit Courts

38th Judicial Circuit: Butler, Edmonson, Hancock & Ohio Circuit Courts

43rd Judicial Circuit: Barren & Metcalfe Circuit and District Courts

44th Judicial Circuit: Bell Circuit Court

45th Judicial Circuit: McLean & Muhlenberg Circuit Courts

47th Judicial Circuit: Letcher Circuit Court

49th Judicial Circuit: Allen & Simpson Circuit, Family and District Courts

50th Judicial Circuit: Boyle & Mercer Circuit Courts

52nd Judicial Circuit: Graves Circuit Court

53rd Judicial Circuit: Anderson, Shelby & Spencer Circuit Courts

54th Judicial Circuit: Boone & Gallatin Circuit Courts

55th Judicial Circuit: Bullitt Circuit, Family & District Courts


Family Court

4th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Hopkins Circuit, Family & District Courts

9th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Hardin Family Court, Red Zone Protocol

9th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Hardin Family Court

12th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Henry, Oldham & Trimble

16th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Kenton Family Court

22nd Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Fayette Family Court

28th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Lincoln, Pulaski & Rockcastle Family Courts

30th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Jefferson Family Court

48th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Franklin Family Court

49th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Allen & Simpson Circuit, Family and District Courts

50th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Boyle & Mercer Family Courts

55th Judicial Circuit, Family Division: Bullitt Circuit, Family & District Courts


District Court

3rd Judicial District: Christian District Court

4th Judicial District: Hopkins Circuit, Family & District Courts

7th Judicial District: Logan & Todd Circuit and District Courts

8th Judicial District: Warren District Court

9th Judicial District: Hardin District Court, Red Zone Protocol

9th Judicial District: Hardin District Court

11th Judicial District: Green, Marion, Taylor & Washington District Courts

12th Judicial District: Henry, Oldham & Trimble Circuit Courts (D12_covidprotocol)

15th Judicial District: Carroll, Grant & Owen District Courts

17th Judicial District: Campbell District Court

18th Judicial District: Harrison, Nicholas, Pendleton & Robertson District Courts

22nd Judicial District: Fayette District Court

28th Judicial District: Pulaski & Rockcastle District Courts

30th Judicial District: Jefferson District Court

38th Judicial District: Butler, Edmonson, Hancock & Ohio District Courts

43rd Judicial District: Barren & Metcalfe Circuit and District Courts

44th Judicial District: Bell District Court

49th Judicial District: Allen & Simpson Circuit, Family and District Courts

53rd Judicial District: Anderson, Shelby & Spencer District Courts

54th Judicial District: Boone & Gallatin District Courts

55th Judicial District: Bullitt Circuit, Family & District Courts

60th Judicial District: Cumberland & Monroe counties


Oct. 29, 2020: Supreme Court issues guidelines for COVID precautions in ‘red zones’ as cases surge this fall and winter

Aug. 28, 2020: Supreme Court announces amended orders related to in-person testimony and evictions

Aug. 11, 2020: Supreme Court announces pilot project to reduce eviction cases in Jefferson County

July 27, 2020: Supreme Court provides new guidance on staffing, access to court facilities, jury trials, evictions

July 9, 2020: Supreme Court cancels in-person bar exams in 2020 as precaution during pandemic, announces remote bar exam Oct. 5-6

July 2, 2020: Gov. Beshear issues orders allowing driver’s licenses to be renewed remotely through Sept. 30 and ending 90-day extension to renew licenses

May 19, 2020: Supreme Court provides guidance on jury trials as courts plan to gradually expand operations starting June 1

May 14, 2020: Chief Justice Minton announces cost-cutting measures for Judicial Branch

May 1, 2020: Chief Justice Minton forms Reopening Task Forces to prepare courts to resume limited in-person services

April 24, 2020: Supreme Court issues additional guidance on handling court matters during pandemic

April 20, 2020: Supreme Court to hear arguments by videoconference April 22 due to COVID-19

April 14, 2020: Supreme Court extends suspension of in-person court services through May 31, 2020

April 1, 2020: Supreme Court suspends in-person services at court facilities, requires court proceedings to be conducted remotely through May 1

March 31, 2020: Supreme Court order gives attorneys more time to complete continuing legal education for 2019-2020 educational year

March 27, 2020: Supreme Court provides guidance for custody and parenting time orders during the pandemic

March 26, 2020: Supreme Court issues new amendments to order limiting in-person court proceedings, extends restrictions to April 24

March 17, 2020: Supreme Court issues new amendments March 17 to order restricting court proceedings during pandemic

March 17, 2020: Driver’s license offices statewide closing for social distancing