As state courthouses in Pennsylvania enter their second month largely closed to the public, civil litigators in the Keystone State are finding themselves in a new reality where lawsuits are tricky to file, settlements are tough to process, cases stall in the doldrums of the shuttered system and nobody knows when, or even if, things will ever get back to normal.

Many civil attorneys say the situation is frustrating and court leaders should be doing more to help keep the civil justice process moving. Others say the shutdowns, which have been imposed to help combat the spread of COVID-19, have increased cooperation among the parties and offer lawyers the opportunity to harness their skills in new ways. But, from depositions to jury trials to office management, none of the attorneys say they are expecting things to return to the way they were.

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