United States Courts
Western district of Missouri
Congress continues to debate the budget and is now funding the federal government by temporary “continuing resolutions.” For the federal courts, this means that we do not know when we will get our appropriated funds or how much we will ultimately get. This makes planning difficult, but there is some good news for our attorneys: A government shutdown does not mean that they will “turn off” CM/ECF or that all court proceedings would automatically be canceled. To the contrary, the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts is working to ensure that essential court functions continue regardless. We live in unprecedented budgetary times, so any guarantees would be foolish. But plans are in place to minimize disruption to court services or an attorney’s ability to fulfill his or her obligations to the court or their clients. And rest assured that should anything affect federal practitioners, we will always notify attorneys directly rather than expecting you to get information about us from the media. As I reminded our employees during these uncertain times, budget woes are challenging but must be kept in perspective when compared to real disasters like those facing the citizens of Japan.