On March 14, the Georgia Supreme Court declared a statewide “judicial emergency.”
The order, from Chief Justice Harold Melton, called on courts across Georgia to “suspend all but essential court functions” during the coronavirus pandemic.
Other local jurisdictions put similar measures in place — Fulton County’s court has stopped hearing all “non-essential cases,” including evictions.
Still, despite these measures, the need for legal services remains. According to records obtained by WABE from the Fulton County Magistrate Court’s website, landlords have filed more than 1,000 eviction cases in the month since the order went into place on March 13.
In addition, other nonprofits and legal aid organizations have confirmed a rise in domestic violence cases since the pandemic began.
Steve Gottlieb, the executive director of Atlanta Legal Aid, recently joined “Closer Look with Rose Scott” to share how his organization is providing legal assistance to low-income clients during the COVID-19 crisis, and how the pandemic has changed how lawyers can serve their clients.
To listen to the full conversation, click on the audio player above.
For more information on evictions and issues of housing affordability visit GeorgiaLegalAid.Org.