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Federal judiciary operating on limited funds during shutdown

January 8, 2019

Federal courts are operating on limited funds during the partial shutdown of the federal government and are working to continue sustaining paid operations through Jan. 18, according to the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.

Currenting the judiciary is using court fee balances and other “no-year” funds to run their operations. However, to achieve the goal of continuing to operate for roughly the next two weeks, the courts have been asked to delay or defer “non-mission critical expenses” such as new hires, non-case-related travel and certain contracts.

Judiciary employees are reporting to work and currently are in full-pay status.

If the existing funds are exhausted before new funds are appropriated, the judiciary will operate under the terms of the Anti-Deficiency Act. This allows for “essential work,” including the resolution of cases and related services, to continue during a lapse of appropriations. Each court would determine the staff necessary to support mission-critical work.

The Case Management/Electronic Case Files (CM/ECF) system remains in operation for electronic filing of documents.

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