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A nearly empty Centre Street on Tuesday. Photo: Ryland West/ALM

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the New York state court system has been accepting only certified essential case filings. You have an open NYSCEF e-filed case, but it’s “non-essential.” You wish to file and press forward, but you’re seemingly hamstrung, the case on hold. Or maybe not. New York procedure is guided mostly by service, not filing, and even in e-filed cases, email and old-fashion service provisions still apply, filing being secondary. Still, there exist certain traps for the unwary if a paper is served and not filed, or when operating remotely, as discussed below.

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