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Page 1 of 3 IN THE COURT OF APPEALS OF MARYLAND ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER ON SUSPENSION OF FORECLOSURES AND EVICTIONS DURING THE COVID-19 EMERGENCY WHEREAS, Pursuant to the Maryland Constitution, Article IV, § 18, the Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals is granted authority as the administrative head of the Judicial Branch of the State, including the closing of courts in the State of Maryland and non-court judicial facilities; and WHEREAS, The Court of Appeals has approved Chapter 1000 of Title 16 of the Maryland Rules of Practice and Procedure setting forth the emergency powers of the Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals; and WHEREAS, In instances of emergency conditions, whether natural or otherwise, that significantly affect access to or the operations of one or more courts or other judicial facilities of the State or the ability of the Judiciary to operate effectively, the Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals may be required to determine the extent to which court operations or judicial functions shall continue; and WHEREAS, Due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, and consistent with guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control, an emergency exists that poses a threat of imminent and potentially lethal harm to vulnerable individuals who may come into contact with a court or judicial facility and personnel; and WHEREAS, To the extent possible, the courts and judicial offices and units have remained operational and provided scheduled and required events while balancing the health and safety needs of court visitors and personnel during the early stage of this emergency; and Page 2 of 3 WHEREAS, Escalation of the emergency has required comprehensive measures to protect the health, safety, and well-being of Maryland residents and Judiciary personnel; and WHEREAS, The Administrative Order on Statewide Judiciary Restricted Operations Due to the COVID-19 Emergency filed March 16, 2020, authorizes the courts’ consideration or resolution of matters that can be addressed without a proceeding that involves testimony or argument; and WHEREAS, Foreclosures of residential property, foreclosures of the right to redeem residential property sold in a tax sale, and residential evictions present the strong likelihood of creating undue hardship if completed during the pendency of the emergency, NOW, THEREFORE, I, Mary Ellen Barbera, Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals and administrative head of the Judicial Branch, pursuant to the authority conferred by Article IV, § 18 of the Maryland Constitution, do hereby order this 18th day of March 2020, as follows: (a) Those foreclosures of residential properties and foreclosures of the rights of redemption of residential properties pending in the circuit courts shall be stayed effective immediately; and (b) Residential eviction matters pending in the District Court of Maryland and all pending residential eviction orders shall be stayed effective immediately; and (c) New foreclosure of residential property, foreclosure of rights of redemption after a tax sale, and residential evictions shall be stayed upon filing; and (d) To the extent that this Administrative Order conflicts with extant Administrative Orders, local judicial orders or memoranda, this Administrative Order shall prevail; and Page 3 of 3 (e) This Administrative Order will be revised as circumstances warrant. /s/ Mary Ellen Barbera Mary Ellen Barbera Chief Judge Court of Appeals of Maryland Filed: March 18, 2020 /s/ Suzanne C. Johnson Suzanne C. Johnson Clerk Court of Appeals of Maryland
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