Office of Court Administration
ATTORNEYS AND STAFF
UNDER STAY-AT-HOME ORDERS
Dated: March 26, 2020
Legal services are essential to the justice system, which is itself essential to the people. The
need for legal services only increases in a disaster like the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Lawyers should lead by example by working in ways that, for themselves, staff, clients,
and others, allow social distancing, avoid groups larger than permitted by local and state
authorities, and encourage hand-washing and sanitary practices throughout the workplace.
Lawyers should consider alternatives to in-person meetings, should telework and require staff to
telework whenever possible, and should minimize office operations. Lawyers should not engage
in activities merely for convenience or personal preference when other means, such as telephoning,
tele- or video-conferencing, and online meetings, are available.
But lawyers must also be permitted to practice law free from local stay-at-home orders and
other restrictions on travel and business practices. Lawyers and staff may travel and engage in
activities reasonably necessary to provide legal services, as is permitted for other essential services.
Lawyers and staff may travel to and attend court proceedings, depositions, and meetings with
clients and others. Stay-at-home and similar orders do not prohibit such travel and activities
involved in the practice of law as long as every effort is made to avoid risks to the public health.
Administrative Director of the Courts
Texas Office of Court Administration