Court Operations during the COVID-19 Outbreak
Information about Hearings, Filings, and Operations


Chief Judge Charles Novack • Clerk of Court Edward Emmons

News and Announcements

Important Change to ECF Sealed Document Procedures Due to CM/ECF System Breach

            The Administrative Office of the United States Courts has provided notice of a national breach of the CM/ECF system and has called upon courts to implement new security procedures to protect Highly Sensitive Documents.  Given the limited number and nature of documents that are filed under seal by the bankruptcy court, the court construes this request to apply to all motions to seal documents filed in this court.  The bankruptcy court is working to update its motion to seal protocols, and is awaiting further guidance and direction from the Administrative Office of the Courts on this matter.

            In the interim, the bankruptcy court is revising its “Electronically Filing Sealed and Redacted Documents” guideline (the “Guideline”) as follows:

            Step 2 under the “CM/ECF Filing Sequence For Sealed Documents” is stricken, and the moving party shall not electronically file the document(s) at issue. Instead, the moving party shall contact and inform chambers that it is filing a motion to seal a document.  After notifying chambers, the moving party shall place the document(s) in question into an envelope that identifies on its cover the bankruptcy case/adversary proceeding caption and states in bold, upper case language that it contains “PROPOSED DOCUMENT(S) TO BE FILED UNDER SEAL.” The moving party shall securely seal the envelope and cause the envelope to be delivered and deposited into the court’s drop-box located in the San Francisco or San Jose courthouse.  The court shall physically secure the document(s) in question. 

            Paragraph 4 of the Guideline shall now read as follows:

            A.  If Motion is Granted: The proposed document(s) Filed Under Seal will remain sealed and become part of the record, but will not be electronically filed. The Clerk will annotate the original docket entry as follows: PROPOSED SEALED DOCUMENT(S) APPROVED-REFER TO DOCKET ENTRY #_. 

            B. If Motion is Denied: The proposed document will remain in the secure possession of the court and will not be placed on the electronic docket. The Clerk will annotate the original docket entry as follows: PROPOSED SEALED DOCUMENTS DENIED-REFER TO DOCKET ENTRY #_.

Judicial Council of California Adopts Emergency Rules

On April 6, 2020, the Judicial Council of California adopted Emergency Rules intended to address issues relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.  These Emergency Rules took effect on April 6, 2020 and some of them pertain to unlawful detainer actions and judicial foreclosure actions.  The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California has posted the Emergency Rules here for informational purposes only.  All parties and counsel should understand that the Judicial Council’s Emergency Rules neither govern nor restrict the power of Bankruptcy Judges to decide matters based upon the provisions of the Bankruptcy Code and Rules, nor do they provide a doctrinal basis to enlarge a Bankruptcy Judge’s powers to decide matters before them.

PDF icon CA Rules of Court (Emergency Rules Adopted and Eff. Apr. 6, 2020)

Virtual Luncheon with the Judges and the Bench-Bar Liaison Commitee

The Bankruptcy Judges of the Northern District of California and the Bench-Bar Liaison Committee are hosting a virtual luncheon on January 29, 2021 from 12 PM-1:30 PM. The event takes place on Zoom and offers an opportunity for questions and answers. 

To register:

If you have a question for the Judges, please fill out the form:

Questions must be submitted by January 22, 2021 for review and planning of the webinar.

Changes to the Miscellaneous Fee Schedule, Effective December 1, 2020

The Judicial Conference of the United States approved adjustments to the miscellaneous fee schedule for bankruptcy courts.

PDF icon MiscFeeScheduleEff12.2020.pdf


IMPORTANT:  Do not use to pay Chapter 13 plan payments to the trustee or Chapter 11 quarterly fees to the trustee.

You can pay filing fees and make installment payments for Chapter 7, 11, and 13 cases. You can also pay other fees such as searches, copies, exemplifications, and certifications.

Please call the Clerk's Office at (888) 821-7606, in advance, to verify the fee amount.

Use the following link: