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Jefferson courts granted emergency relief

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The Indiana Supreme Court granted emergency relief Thursday to Jefferson County courts pursuant to Administrative Rule 17. Jefferson County trial courts and clerk filed the petition with the high court following a fire that severely damaged the courthouse in Madison.

In its request for relief, Jefferson Circuit Judge Ted R. Todd explained the damage caused by Wednesday's fire has left the courts and clerk's office unable to perform their duties until they can secure a temporary location or repairs are made to the existing courthouse.

The Supreme Court granted the petition, authorizing the closing of the courts from May 21 until noon on June 5. If appropriate space is available before then, the courts may process emergency matters only. The petition also allows for the courts and clerk's office to relocate to another facility, with the Superior Court remaining in Madison, pursuant to Indiana statute.

The petition also authorizes the tolling from May 21 to noon on June 5 of all laws, rules and procedures setting time limits for speedy trials, all judgments, support, and other orders, and all other civil and criminal matters before the Jefferson Circuit and Superior courts. There will be no interest due or charged during the tolled period.

The courts and clerk's office are required to communicate with the Jefferson County bar and public to make arrangements to deal with emergency and pressing matters and must also maintain the appropriate records while closed so that the information can be entered into the Chronological Case Summary and Record of Judgment and Orders as soon as they are operational.

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