COVID-19 Updates on Governmental Offices

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March 31, 2020

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak has caused governmental offices and courthouses to cease or alter their services. This Fact Sheet provides an overview of those governmental offices and courthouses that are closed or have altered services. Updates will be made as they become available. If you have questions about how these closures or limitations may affect you or your business, we stand ready to assist.

Governmental Offices – Federal

United States Patent and Trademark Office

  • Operations will continue as normal without interruption until otherwise notified.
  • The USPTO is waiving petition fees in certain situations for customers impacted by the coronavirus.
  • The Director of the USPTO has extended the filing deadlines of certain items due between March 27, 2020 and April 30, 2020, including:
    • Responses to Office Actions,
    • Statements of Use or extension requests to file a Statement of Use,
    • Notices of Opposition or extension requests to file a Notice of Opposition,
    • Renewal applications, and
    • Affidavits of Use.
  • The deadlines have been extended 30 days from the initial date it was due, provided that the filing is accompanied by a statement that the delay in filing or payment was due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Internal Revenue Service

  • All Taxpayer Assistance Centers are temporarily closed.
  • The April 15 filing deadline for tax returns has been extended to July 15, 2020.
  • All individual and other non-corporate tax filers are allowed to defer up to $1 million of federal income tax (including self-employment tax) payments due on April 15, 2020, until July 15, 2020, without penalties or interest.
  • Corporate taxpayers are allowed to defer up to $10 million of federal income tax (including self-employment tax) payments due on April 15, 2020, until July 15, 2020, without penalties or interest.

Governmental Offices – Illinois 

Secretary of State

  • Closed to the public through April 7, 2020.
  • Expiration dates for driver’s licenses, identification (ID) cards, vehicle registrations and other transactions and document filings will be extended by 30 days through an emergency rule.
  • Reminder: many transactions may be conducted online – customers are encouraged to take advantage of the online services (i.e. filing Business Services documents)

Department of Revenue

  • The April 15 filing deadline for all taxpayers who file and pay Illinois income taxes is automatically extended to July 15, 2020.
  • Penalties and interest will begin to accrue on any remaining unpaid balances as of July 16, 2020.
  • This does not impact the first and second installments of estimated payments for 2020 taxes that are due April 15 and July 15.
  • Taxpayers who operate eating and drinking establishments that incurred a total Sales Tax liability of less than $75,000 in calendar year 2019 will not be charged penalties or interest on late payments for Sales Tax liabilities reported on Form ST-1, Sales and Use Tax and E911 Surcharge Return, that are due for the February, March, and April 2020 reporting periods.

Governmental Offices – Missouri

  • The Missouri Capitol and state government office buildings will close to the public starting Tuesday, March 24. They will remain closed until at least April 6. The move does not apply to prisons, veterans homes and other state-run facilities.

Department of Revenue:

  • The April 15 filing deadline for tax returns has been extended to July 15, 2020. The deadlines for income tax payments for individual and corporate income returns with a due date of April 15, 2020 has also been extended to July 15, 2020. These extensions are automatic – filers do not need to take any additional steps to qualify.
  • Penalties and interest will begin to accrue on any remaining unpaid balances as of July 16, 2020.

Courthouses – Federal

 Southern District of Illinois

  • The federal courthouses in East St. Louis and Benton remain open to the public, subject to limitations.
  • All civil matters scheduled for an in-court appearance are continued pending further order; judges have discretion to utilize videoconferencing or teleconferencing.

Central District of Illinois

  • The courthouses remain open.
  • All civil and criminal jury trials scheduled to begin before April 3, 2020, are continued and will be rescheduled by the presiding judge to a date after April 3, 2020.
  • All civil hearings, including settlement conferences, will be conducted by telephone or video teleconference.

Eastern District of Missouri

  • The United States Courthouses located within the District will remain open, but office hours for the Clerk of Court will be reduced to 10am to 3pm.
  • All civil and criminal jury trials scheduled to begin before May 31, 2020, are continued and will be rescheduled by the presiding judge to a date after May 31, 2020.
  • All proceedings will be conducted by means other than in-person meetings wherever possible by law and as directed by the presiding judge in the proceeding.
  • Any proceeding not deemed essential by the presiding judge in the proceeding that does require in-person meeting will be continued until further notice by the presiding judge.

7th Circuit Court of Appeals 

  • The court is closely monitoring the progression of COVID-19 to determine possible impact to court operations.

8th Circuit Court of Appeals

  • The 8th Circuit remains open for business. The public is not being admitted to the Eighth Circuit Clerk’s Office at the present time.

Courthouses – Illinois 

Madison County

  • Effective March 23, 2020, the following matters are continued for 30 days:
    •  All jury and non-jury trials in civil, criminal, and traffic divisions.
    • All arbitration, mediation, foreclosure matters, and any hearings or trials associated with such dockets.
  • Effective March 23, 2020, all Plenary Orders of Protection , Emergency Orders of Protection, and Plenary and Emergency Civil Stalking No Contact Orders are extended for 30 days.
    • Parties may seek relief from such Orders only upon filing a motion with the assigned judge.
  • Effective March 20, 2020 and until further order of the court, only essential court matters and proceedings will continue to be heard. All non-essential court matters and proceedings will be continued or, where possible, conducted remotely.
  • All case management and status dockets scheduled for March 2020 will be continued by the assigned judges.
  • All Probate and Landlord-Tenant cases scheduled through April 15 will be continued by the assigned judges.
  • All civil motion dockets or settings scheduled through April 15 will be continued by the assigned judges in the event of an agreement to do so by the parties. If an agreement cannot be obtained, or cannot be conducted by email, video, or telephonic means, such motions will proceed at the discretion of the assigned judge.
  • The court will continue to conduct hearings on essential or timely matters if the presentment of a motion or petition cannot be conducted remotely by email, video, or telephonic means.
  • All arbitration hearings set in March are continued without the necessity of either party filing a motion to continue.
  • All foreclosure settings through April 20 are continued without the necessity of either party filing a motion to continue.

St. Clair County

  • Effective March 24, 2020, all civil matters are continued for sixty days, and all arbitration, mediation, and foreclosure matters are continued.

Macoupin County

5th District Appellate Court

  • Until further notice, the court will remain open and all filing deadlines will remain in effect.
  • The clerk’s office will remain open for business during its regular business hours, but the building will be closed to the general public.

Courthouses – Missouri

  • On March 22, the Supreme Court of Missouri issued an order in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Among other directives, the order suspends – with certain listed exceptions – all in-person proceedings, as well as grand jury proceedings in all state courts through April 17.
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