As of midnight yesterday, the U.S. government has been shut down indefinitely
until Congress can come to an agreement on a budget. An agreement was
not reached because Republicans will not approve a stop-gap measure unless
ObamaCare is defunded, and Democrats refuse to block the money for the
Affordable Care Act. Until one side relents or the two can come to a compromise,
the government will be in a state of shutdown. This shutdown has implications
in almost every area you can think of, so it is only appropriate to ask
the question: "Will the government shutdown affect my criminal case?"
According to a report by NBC News,
Federal courts would continue operating normally for about 10 business
days after the start of a shutdown, roughly until the middle of October.
If the shutdown continues, the judiciary may have to begin furloughs of
employees whose work is not considered essential. But cases would continue
to be heard.
So what does this mean? Criminal cases will continue to be heard, but how
efficiently they are handled is what might be affected should the shutdown
continue for more than ten days. The last government shutdown happened
17 years ago, and another one not long before that. One lasted for five
days while the other went on for three weeks. The longer Congress allows
this shutdown to continue, the greater the implications for federal programs,
including federal courts and the U.S. Department of Justice.
According to the Justice Department, while many civil cases will likely
be suspended until Congress agrees on a budget, "criminal litigation
will continue without interruption." If you have additional questions
or concerns about this shutdown and how it could affect your
federal criminal case, please do not hesitate to
Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer at
Martinian & Associates Inc. today.