First Judicial District Court
**Weather Delays and Closures**
* In-Person Hearings Update
Pursuant to the New Mexico Supreme Court Order No. 21-8500-015 effective July 19, 2021, the following types of hearings will be conducted in person, absent a court order requiring remote proceedings: 1) Kinship Guardianship; 2) Order of Protection; 3) cases with a PQ designation; 4) cases with a sequestered case designation; and, 5) Termination of Parental Rights, 6) Pretrial Detention, or Dangerousness Hearings 7) Preliminary Examinations or Preliminary Hearings, 8) Competency Evidentiary hearings, 9) Pleas (only for current case, no PV in-custody pleas), 10) Sentencing (only for current case, no PV in-custody pleas), 11) Bench Trials (lower court appeals and jury trials that turn into bench trials), 12) Probation Violation (evidentiary hearings only for out of custody and jail time sought -No Status – In custody do not come for status, evidentiary hearings, pleas or sentencing). Civil bench trials are presumed to be via google meets, absent a court order requiring in person proceedings. Parties may request in person bench trials and such requests are subject to approval of the presiding judge and the chief judge.
WITH RESPECT TO CIVIL JURY TRIALS, THE USE OF GOOGLE MEET – VIDEO AND AUDIO -MAY BE LEARNED BY CONTACTING THE JUDGE’S TCAA. Please see District Court Judges on the left sidebar for Judge/Division contact information.
FOR CRIMINAL JURY TRIALS, GOOGLE MEET WILL NOT BE UTILIZED TO ENSURE THAT THE RULE EXCLUDING WITNESSES PRIOR TO THEIR TESTIMONY IS HONORED. Please see the calendar page on the left sidebar for Google Meet access information, per Division/Judge.
Attorneys, Pro Se Litigants, Grand Jurors, and Public:
The First Judicial District Court will remain open with regular business hours, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. The Court Clerk’s office does close at 4:00 p.m. daily, but is open during the noon hour.
- NOTICE ON REMOTE ACCESS TO COURT PROCEEDINGS
Members of the press and public who wish to remotely observe a proceeding conducted by telephone or video during the current public health emergency, SHALL OBTAIN THE TELEPHONE OR VIDEO CONFERENCE CALL-IN PHONE NUMBER and PIN from the specific Judge’s CALENDAR webpage or DISTRICT COURT JUDGES Division Page (on the left sidebar).
- Please use the Judiciary’s online “Case Lookup” to check the status of civil and criminal cases, including whether a hearing is scheduled in a particular case.
- Individuals answering “Yes” to any of the following screening questions should avoid coming to the courthouse, you will NOT BE PERMITTED IN THE BUILDING.
New Mexico Judicial Branch COVID-19 Court Facility Screening Questions Public
If you have answered “Yes” to any of these questions, and have court business, please contact the following as applicable: If you are a juror, contact the Jury Division at (505) 455-8225; for other District Court matters contact the Court Clerk’s office at (505) 455-8268 or (505) 455-8200; if you are scheduled to appear in court before a judge contact the judge’s office directly.
(Contact information may be found to the left under “District Court Judges.”)
- When in the courthouse you must wear a mask at all times and observe six feet of social distancing between you and any other person.
- Pro se parties in a case, and cases for which e-filing is not yet accepted (sequestered cases) may use the following email address to e-file: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Jury trials will commence July 13, 2020 (see reopening plan for further information and guidance).
- Grand Juries are suspended until further Order of the Court. Preliminary Examinations are to be conducted by the Magistrate Courts.
Contact Information for the First Judicial District Magistrate Courts is as follows:
Santa Fe Magistrate Court (505) 984-9914 ext. 131
Espanola Magistrate Court (505) 984-3955
Chama Magistrate Court (505) 984-3975
Los Alamos Magistrate Court (505) 662-2727
*Please see the Division calendar pages for Guidelines, Protocols and information specific to Civil, Criminal and Family Courts.
Los Alamos County Courthouse
The Center was designed by WH Pacific, a national architecture and engineering firm which specializes in developing designs which are sensitive to the natural environment and the community. Utilizing energy-efficient systems such as a heat-reflecting roof and high-efficiency mechanical systems, the Los Alamos County Justice Center has achieved a LEED Gold certification through the United States Green Building Council (USGBC).
Rio Arriba County Courthouse
When Tierra Amarilla was designated as the county seat the villagers set about building a courthouse. This structure was demolished to make way for the present one, which was built in 1917 and gained notoriety fifty years later when it was the location of a gunfight between land rights activists and authorities. The neoclassical design by Isaac Rapp is now on the National Register of Historic Places.
Santa Fe County Judicial Complex
The new Steve Herrera Judicial Complex building includes courtroom and office space housed in the three levels above grade as well as below grade parking and detention cells. The grand entrance is a two story atrium with pillars and stone floors. The courtrooms include custom millwork. The project achieved LEED Gold Certification.
First Judicial District Criminal Justice Coordinating Council
The Local Criminal Justice Coordinating Councils were originally created by Supreme Court Order. In 2019, the New Mexico Legislature passed HB 267 which created these Local Criminal Justice Coordinating Councils per statute. Under this bill, the Council meets once monthly. Due to COVID-19, the Council for the First Judicial District is meeting virtually. Please see the left sidebar for the FJDCJC Council Tab.
Adverse/Inclement Weather Notice
In the event of a snow delay due to inclement weather, the courthouse will open to the public at 10:00 a.m. If the snow warrants a closure, the courthouse will be closed to the public.
All delays or closures will be reported to the major news stations, KOAT, KOB and KRQE and our website will be updated and will include information for all counties, Santa Fe, Los Alamos and Rio Arriba, please look for information for the First Judicial District Court.
In the event there is a “delay,” please read the directions posted on the First Judicial District Court website regarding the particular judge’s docket for which your hearing is scheduled here. For many judges, in the event of a snow delay, dockets will generally begin at 10:00 a.m. for a two hour delay and 11:00 a.m. for a three hour delay. In this event, attorneys, parties, witnesses, etc., with hearings set earlier than these two times should be present at 10:00 a.m. for a two hour delay or 11:00 a.m. for a three hour delay. Attorneys and parties whose hearings were set at either 10:00 a.m. or 11:00 a.m. should report at those originally scheduled times.
However, some judges simply reschedule the cases set in the 8:00-10:00 a.m. time period (in the event of a two hour delay) or the 8:00-11:00 a.m. time period (in the event of a three hour delay) to another part of the day or to another day entirely. In this event, please carefully read that portion of the District’s website, under Calendars/Division Policies which relates to the particular judge on whose docket your case is scheduled and follow that specific information.
For all courthouses, in the event of a “closure,” all hearings set that for that particular day will be reset by the judge, with notice to all parties and counsel.