On January 31, 2020, the Executive Board of the Supreme People’s Court issued the Circular on Proper Enforcement during the Novel Coronavirus Epidemic Prevention and Control Period (the “Circular”). The Circular sets out arrangements relating to enforcement work during the novel coronavirus epidemic prevention and control period as highlighted below:
1. All levels of courts are required to minimize group enforcement actions and field investigations. Work matters such as contacting and receiving parties will also be handled via mobile enforcement platforms, telephone, SMS, WeChat, e-mail, etc., as much as possible. If an appointment with the parties is truly necessary, it will be conducted to the extent that the safety of the physical conditions of the parties may be ensured and the corresponding protective measures are properly taken. Relevant enforcement hearings should, in principle, be suspended or postponed as appropriate after the parties have been consulted.
2. During the prevention and control of the epidemic, all levels of courts are required to take prudent measures with respect to the people subject to enforcement or the relevant individuals. Where detention is warranted, it will be carried out in accordance with the epidemic prevention requirements of the detention facility. If the detention facility expressly communicates that detention is not possible because of the epidemic, the enforcement court will lift the detention measure after confirming that the person subject to enforcement or the relevant individuals have no infection symptoms.
3. If all levels of courts suspend or defer relevant enforcement measures or matters due to the prevention and control of the epidemic, they will timely postpone and extend the deadline of cases in accordance with the law and judicial interpretations.
4. All levels of courts are to show genuine concern and love for the enforcement officers. If they or their families are confirmed or suspected to be infected, the courts should immediately report this to the local epidemic prevention department, coordinate medical treatment at the first opportunity, and report it to the Supreme People’s Court in a timely manner.