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The courtroom, whether a physical in-person courtroom, or a virtual courtroom, remains a formal and serious setting where judges hear matters involving real people that affect real lives. Every case is important, and all participants should maintain court decorum in the virtual world, just as they would in person. We ask all individuals participating in Remote Court proceedings, as well as all meetings called by a member of the New Mexico Judiciary, to continue to observe the following well-established rules of court standards and decorum:

1) Arrive on Time and Follow Remote Proceedings Directions – To minimize distractions during the court proceeding, log in a few minutes before the scheduled start time and follow the Google Meet (or other virtual platform) directions provided by your presiding judge and/or their staff. Identify yourself when in the virtual meeting with your real name.

2) Camera – Your camera should be turned on in a remote proceeding and in Judicial meetings, unless you have express permission from the Judge or chair of the meeting to turn off your camera. Make sure there is ample light so you can be clearly seen by the Judge and other participants. Make sure the camera is pointed directly at your face.

3) Dress Appropriately for Court – Business attire (collared shirt with or without a tie or jacket for either gender) is always appropriate for court; sweatshirts, gym clothes, Hawaiian shirts, concert t-shirts, sports team jerseys, bedazzled images, and pajamas are never appropriate.

4) Eliminate Distractions – Participating in Remote Court proceedings often means working from home. Please try to locate a quiet area and minimize interruptions by others in the home. While we agree that your children and pets are adorable, their presence in the remote courtroom distracts you, the Court, and other participants from the subject matter of the hearing. We recognize in the close quarters at home, utmost quiet is not available to everyone, but please minimize distractions as much as possible.

  Consider using a virtual background to eliminate visual distractions in the background.

  Put your cell phones and other technology in silent mode during the Virtual Court proceeding.

  If you must appear in a remote proceeding from your vehicle, please make sure you parked at a safe place before joining the remote proceeding. Do not attend a Virtual Court proceeding while driving.

5) Do Not Speak Out of Turn or Interfere in Testimony – Just like an in-person court setting, the presiding judge will indicate when it’s your turn to be heard. In order to prevent any accidental audio distractions, please mute your audio setting until it is your turn to speak. If another person is testifying, you may not suggest answers – including via texting or chat, make gestures, or otherwise coach a witness or a party from off camera.

6) Be Courteous and Respectful to all Virtual Court Participants – Use good manners; ensure that your physical and facial expressions are appropriate and uphold the dignity of a court setting. Ensure your language upholds the dignity of a court setting – do not use profanity.

7) Do Not Bring Food to the Virtual Courtroom – Do not eat or chew gum during proceedings. Coffee is fine, we all need coffee. Tea and water are also acceptable.

8) Do not Use Tobacco or Vaping Products in the Remote Courtroom or During Remote Meetings

9) Sit Up Straight – Show the same courtesy the Court is showing you. Do not prop your feet up on a table or chair. Take time to make sure your camera is pointed straight at your face – not from below or from the side. We want to see you at your best.

10) No Recording – There is no filming or videotaping of remote proceedings. No sound recordings of the proceedings shall be permitted except by the official court reporter for the court or over FTR, and no broadcasting of the proceedings shall be permitted.

11) Prepare Your Exhibits – Exhibits must be submitted to the Court and opposing counsel 48 hours before a hearing.

12) Impairment – An appearance while being impaired to any degree by alcohol, sedatives, prescriptions, or controlled substances is prohibited and must be reported. If it is appears or if the Court determines that any person at a proceeding is under the influence, the hearing will be rescheduled or other appropriate action may be taken.

Per Supreme Court Order No. 22-8500-018, appearances by phone are only allowed if the presiding judge has found “compelling circumstances” that the person is unable to appear by video.

* Recording or live streaming of hearings is prohibited. Violation may constitute contempt of court and result in a fine of up to $500 and a jail term of up to 180 days.*

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