In a case filed in 2019 and set for trial in May 5, 2020, “[t]he COVID-19 pandemic intervened.”
The parties filed a Rule 11 agreement regarding the exchange of discovery, an agreed continuance, and agreed mediation no later than June 1. The court extended the trial date nine days to May 14, 2020 and stated it would be conducted remotely.
“Ordinarily, an order denying a motion for continuance presents an incidental trial ruling not reviewable by mandamus.” But “the emergency orders as well as the unique and serious circumstances created by the COVID-19 pandemic require flexibility and adaptability in all aspects of our legal system.” These “extraordinary circumstances” show an “abuse of discretion in denying, in part, the parties’ agreed motion for continuance.” Mandamus relief was conditionally granted.
In re Rodriguez, No. 05-20-00523-CV, 2020 WL 2487061 (Tex. App.—Dallas May 13, 2020).