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EMERGENCY REQUESTS AND COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS) PANDEMIC MEASURES - JUDICIAL DIVISION

Apr 1st, 2020

Emergency Matters

SPECIAL COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS) PANDEMIC JUDICIAL FILING AND 
JUDICIAL INFORMATION REQUEST INSTRUCTIONS

 

MOST judicial pleadings can be filed electronically by lawyers.  ELECTRONIC FILING IS STRONGLY ENCOURAGED.  Instructions relating to electronic filing of pleadings are provided on the Court’s Internet website.

ALL judicial pleadings can be filed by written-paper document.  ALL pleadings can be: (1) mailed to the Court for filing, or (2) filed in person at the Court’s Judicial Division Intake Service Office located on the first floor of the Mobile County Government Center Annex.  FILING BY MAIL IS STRONGLY ENCOURAGED.  If you mail your pleading to the Court for filing, we suggest that you include a copy of the pleading being filed and a pre-addressed, stamped envelope for us to return the copy to you reflecting the date and time the original pleading was filed. 

The Judicial Division’s service window on the third floor is temporarily CLOSED.

If you have a question you desire to pose to a Judicial Division staff member, you can: (1) email the staff member (the Court’s email address directory is available through the Court’s Internet website), (2) telephone the staff member (the Court’s staff telephone directory is available through the Court’s Internet website), or (3) request to meet with the staff member at the Court by prior, approved appointment.  In-person, direct meetings are STRONGLY DISCOURAGED and MUST be approved IN ADVANCE by the Chief Clerk of the Court (Mr. Mark Erwin). 

BEFORE an in-person, direct meeting will be approved, the requestor must verbally confirm: (1) the requestor has not known contagious, communicable illness or disease (of any nature), (2) the requestor has not experienced any COVID-19 (coronavirus) symptoms during the previous 14 day time period, AND (3) the requestor has not had any known contact with a person who has stated that they have COVID-19 symptoms during the past 14 days or has been diagnosed with COVID-19 virus during the past 14 days.  If the in-person, direct meeting is approved, when the requestor arrives at the Court for the scheduled meeting, prior to the commencement of the meeting, the requestor must execute a written statement confirming the aforesaid representations under the fear of the penalty of perjury.

EMERGENCY REQUESTS

As a service to persons who believe they have an emergency request relating to a matter that is either pending before the Court or with regard to which it is believed the Court would have jurisdiction, the following instructions are offered.

GUARDIANSHIP AND CONSERVATORSHIP MATTERS

If a person has an emergency request relating to a guardianship or conservatorship matter, the following information is offered:

Existing - Pending Case

  1. Contact the lawyer(s) involved in the case.  This information is available through the Court’s Internet website in the Judicial section of the website.
     
  2. All requests for court-ordered action must be stated in writing and signed by the person making the request, and the original, executed request must be delivered to the Court.  You are encouraged to have these requests “sworn” in the presence of a notary public before they are filed.  Copies of any such request should also be mailed to all lawyers involved in the case.  To ascertain the identity of such lawyers, refer to the Judicial section of the Court’s website.  The addresses of lawyers can be ascertained from the Alabama State Bar’s Internet website (noted in the Court’s “Links” section).
     
  3. The requestor can contact the Judicial Division of the Court with specific questions at 251.574.6010 or at  probatecourt@probate.mobilecountyal.gov.  HOWEVER, please note that the Court and its staff are PROHIBITED by Alabama law from offering any forms or providing any legal advice.

 
New Matter

1.  Contact the Mobile County Department of Human Resources.

  • Matters Concerning A Child (a person under 19 years of age)

If the matter concerns a child, DHR’s Child Welfare Division should be contacted.  The telephone number is 251.450.9100.

  • Matters Concerning An Adult

If the matter concerns an adult, DHR’s Adult Protective Services Division should be contacted.  The telephone number is 251.450.1800.

2.  Seek legal counsel.  If you are unable to pay for the services of a lawyer, it is suggested that you contact the South Alabama Volunteer Lawyers Program (“SAVLP”) to ascertain eligibility for a volunteer lawyer to assist you.  When you contact the SAVLP, their staff will assist you in applying for services.  The contact information for the SAVLP is:

Client telephone application line: 251.438.1102 or 1 - 855.997.2857
Website:          www.savlp.org                        Email: info@savlp.org

3.  All requests for court-ordered action must be stated in writing and signed by the person making the request, and the original, executed request must be delivered to the Court.   Information (identity, address, age, and mental status) of interested persons must be included or identified to the Court.  Further, in most instances, the copy of a written report from a medical professional concerning the alleged incapacitated person should be attached to the petition, in support thereof.  The person making the request should refer to the Code of Alabama (1975) (available on the “Links” section of the Court’s website).  In many instances, Alabama law requires these requests to be executed in the presence of a notary public, with an acknowledgment that the statements contained in the request are true and correct to the best of the requestor’s information, knowledge and belief.

4.  The requestor can contact the Judicial Division of the Court with specific questions at 251.574.6010 or at  probatecourt@probate.mobilecountyal.gov.  HOWEVER, please note that the Court and its staff are PROHIBITED by Alabama law from offering any forms or providing any legal advice.

MENTAL HEALTH INVOLUNTARY COMMITMENT MATTERS

Existing - Pending Case
 

  1. Contact the lawyer(s) involved in the case.  If you do not have this information, you can obtain it by contacting the Court at 251.574.6011 or probatecourt@probate.mobilecountyal.gov.
     
  2. All requests for court-ordered action must be stated in writing and signed by the person making the request, and the original, executed request must be delivered to the Court.  You are encouraged to have these requests “sworn” in the presence of a notary public before they are filed.  Copies of any such request should also be mailed to all lawyers involved in the case.  The addresses of lawyers can be ascertained from the Alabama State Bar’s Internet website (noted in the Court’s “Links” section).
     
  3. The requestor can contact the Judicial Division of the Court with specific questions at 251.574.6011 or at  probatecourt@probate.mobilecountyal.gov.  HOWEVER, please note that the Court and its staff are PROHIBITED by Alabama law from offering any forms or providing any legal advice.
     
  4. If a mental health consumer is the subject of an order of the Court for treatment in the community and they are not compliant with the Court’s order, AltaPointe Health Systems, Inc.  (“AHS”), Mobile County’s publicly-funded, community mental health provider, should be contacted immediately.  AHS has a statutory responsibility to immediately notify the Court if a mental health consumer under the order of the Court for treatment is materially non-compliant with treatment.  The AHS contact person is Dr. Cindy Gipson, Assistant Director of Intensive Services for AHS.  Her contact information is:

            Telephone:      251.450.5976                          Facsimile:        251.450.4324
             E-mail: cgipson@altapointe.org
 
            If Dr. Gipson is not available, we suggest that you contact Ms. Rebecca Beach, AHS’ outpatient “bridge team” leader.  Ms. Beach’s contact information is:
 
            Telephone:      251.450.5924                          Facsimile:        251.450.4324
            E-mail: rbeach@altapointe.org
 
            You are encouraged to document your contact-report in writing.

New Matter

  1. Contact AHS’ “CarePointe” line at 251.450.2211.  Access to live support is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
     
  2.  Contact AHS’ mental health commitment intake clerk at 251.574.6023.  This office is located on the third floor of the Mobile County Government Center Annex, 151 Government Street, Mobile, AL.  Usually an AHS staff member is present at this office from 8:00 o’clock a.m. until 4:30 o’clock p.m., Monday through Friday.  This office will assist persons with preparing and completing petitions requesting the involuntary commitment of a mentally ill person.
     
  3.  If you are unable to contact AHS’ mental health involuntary commitment intake clerk (noted above), contact the Court’s Judicial Division at 251.574.6011 or probatecourt@probate.mobilecountyal.gov for assistance.

 
OTHER JUDICIAL MATTERS

Existing - Pending Case

  1. Contact the lawyer(s) involved in the case.  If you do not have this information, you can obtain it by contacting the Judicial Division of the Court at 251.574.6018 or at probatecourt@probate.mobilecountyal.gov.
     
  2. All requests for court-ordered action must be stated in writing, signed by the person making the request and the original, executed request delivered to the Court.  You are encouraged to have these requests “sworn” in the presence of a notary public before they are filed.  Copies of any such request should also be mailed to all lawyers involved in the case.  The addresses of lawyers can be ascertained from the Alabama State Bar’s Internet website (noted in the Court’s “Links” section).
     
  3. The requestor can contact the Judicial Division of the Court with specific questions at 251.574.6018  or at probatecourt@probate.mobilecountyal.gov.  HOWEVER, please note that the Court and its staff are PROHIBITED by Alabama law from offering any forms or providing any legal advice.

New Matter

  1. Generally, you can represent yourself in legal matters, but we encourage you to seek legal counsel. 
     
  2. Seek legal counsel.  If you are unable to pay for the services of a lawyer, it is suggested that you contact the South Alabama Volunteer Lawyers Program (“SAVLP”) to ascertain eligibility for a volunteer lawyer to assist you.  When you contact the SAVLP, their staff will assist you in applying for services.  The contact information for the SAVLP is:

    Client telephone application line: 251.438.1102 or 1 - 855.997.2857
    Website:          www.savlp.org                        Email: info@savlp.org

  3. All requests for court-ordered action must be stated in writing, signed by the person making the request, and the original, executed request delivered to the Court.   Information (identity, address, age, and mental status) of interested persons must be included or identified to the Court.  The person making the request should refer to the Code of Alabama (1975) (available on the “Links” section of the Court’s website).  In many instances, Alabama law requires these requests to be executed in the presence of a notary public, with an acknowledgment that the statements contained in the request are true and correct to the best of the requestor’s information, knowledge and belief.
     
  4. The requestor can contact the Judicial Division of the Court with specific questions at 251.574.6018 or at probatecourt@probate.mobilecountyal.gov.  HOWEVER, please note that the Court and its staff are PROHIBITED by Alabama law from offering any forms or providing any legal advice.

FILINGS WITH THE COURT

To assist the Court in processing any emergency filing with the Court, please include with the pleading being filed an “Expedited Cover Sheet” PRINTED ON BRIGHTLY COLORED PAPER.  The Expedited Cover Sheet can be obtained by clicking HERE.