Federal Prosecutors Are Filing Motions to Freeze Civil Litigation Cases

In government-shutdown news that affects both civil and criminal litigation, federal prosecutors have begun filing motions to stay (which means to freeze) most civil cases in which the United States is a party. That includes some high-profile matters that some might say are, well, important. Without funding, however, DOJ lawyers are generally prohibited from working, even on a voluntary basis, except for “emergencies involving the safety of human life or the protection of property.” That means the Criminal Division will not shut down entirely, though furloughs may still ensnare over 15% of the employees at the FBI and close to 10% of employees at the National Security Division.

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