Tulsa Attorney BlogDoes Covid-19 Affect If Oklahoma Law Offices Are Open? Are Lawyers Essential?

Are Attorney Essential? Do We Really Need Them?

Video Transcribed:  Are lawyers essential? Do we really need them? I’m Tulsa attorney James Wirth and I’m about to talk to you about the executive order and whether law firms are going to remain open. So Governor Stitt here in Oklahoma on March 24th, entered an executive order that ordered the closing of all non-essential business.

And that document referred to some federal Oklahoma criminal justice reformrules and determinations regarding what it is and is not a federal, I’m sorry, an essential business and what gets to stay open and what does not.

And those regulations do not include lawyers. So there’s a little bit of confusion going on. Are law firms essential, are lawyers essential, are they going to remain open during this time period?

So first thing we know is that the Oklahoma Supreme Court has reduced the number of matters that are being heard in the courts and each judicial district and each county courts have come up with their own rules for the district judges regarding what they are doing, what they’re not doing.

But what’s pretty much unanimous across the board is that certain emergency operations, judicial operations are operating. So if somebody needs emergency custody, that is still available.

If there’s a protective order that’s needed, that is still open. If there’s somebody arrested, you could still have a bond hearing. All those constitutionally required and all of those emergency scenarios are still available.

So then the question comes, if all the law offices are shut down, how are those going to operate? Are the lawyers essential? Well, we just got word from the governor, he has issued some additional guidelines today before the lock down period begins tonight at midnight, that defines more specifically what isn’t is not an essential business.

And lawyers, law firms and related services have been deemed essential. So my law office will be remaining open, although we’re operating under different practices than normal in order to protect ourselves and to protect the public.

But if you call, the phone call will be answered. We are checking our email and we are filing documents with the court as appropriate. So it’s good to know that lawyers are essential, that they’re going to be available for you when you need them. And if you do need one, need a consultation, you can contact us at makelaweasy.com.

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