On Wednesday, July 22, the Iowa Supreme Court issued an order to provide Iowans with the policies and procedures for the safe and fair resumption of jury trials in Iowa this fall. The order builds on the safeguards put in place by a July 9 supreme court order issued to guide judges, attorneys, parties and all court employees as many courts resumed face-to-face services on July 13.
The Jumpstart Jury Trials Task Force, a cross-section of judges, attorneys and court personnel from across Iowa, consulted with public health experts and county officials to develop the policies and procedures in this order. The supreme court postponed jury trials and nearly all public, in-person court services in March to protect public health and safety due to the COVID-19 public health emergency. The order lays out changes regarding the juror summons process, jury selection, trial procedures and jury deliberations, when jury trials begin on Sept. 14.