The current term of office of United States Magistrate Judge Karoline Mehalchick in the

Middle District of Pennsylvania is due to expire on July 14, 2021. The United States District

Court is required by law to establish a panel of citizens to consider the reappointment of the

magistrate judge to a new eight-year term.


The duties of a magistrate judge in this court include the following: (1) To exercise all the powers and duties conferred or imposed upon United States Magistrate Judges by law or the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure or the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure; (2) To administer oaths and affirmations, impose conditions of release under 18 U.S.C. §3146, and take acknowledgments, affidavits, and depositions; (3) To try persons accused of misdemeanors committed within this district in accordance with 18 U.S.C. §3401, order presentence investigation reports and sentence such persons; (4) To conduct proceedings in accordance with Fed.R.Cr.P. 40; (5) To conduct extradition proceedings, in accordance with 18 U.S.C. §3184;

(6) To appoint attorneys under the court’s Criminal Justice Act Plan; (7) To review applications by prisoners for post-trial and other relief, make such orders as are necessary to obtain appropriate information which may be of assistance in determining the merits of any complaint, submit reports and recommendations to the district judge having jurisdiction over the case; (8) To act as a special master when designated by the district court; (9) To receive indictments returned by grand juries; (10) To conduct arraignments to the extent of taking a not guilty plea or noting a defendant’s intention to plead guilty or nolo contendere; and, (11) To conduct trials and the disposition of civil cases on consent of the parties.


Comments from members of the bar and the public are invited as to whether the incumbent magistrate judge should be recommended by the panel for reappointment by the court and should be directed to:


Merit Selection Panel

c/o Clerk, U.S. District Court

Ronald Reagan Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse

228 Walnut Street

Room 1060

Harrisburg, PA 17101


Comments must be received no later than December 1, 2020.

FREE Public Records Virtual Seminar scheduled for May 14, 2020

Please join Thomson Reuters for a Conversation with National Public Records Specialist, Mary Anne Manoles, to learn more about client due diligence in this ever-changing environment.

In our changing environment where we no longer are having face-to-face conversations with our new clients, how are you conducting your client due diligence? What do you really know about the individual on the other end of the phone who is seeking your legal services? How are you confirming what your potential client has shared with you, or uncovering what they may have failed to share with you?

In our virtual session, you will see how to quickly determine relevant information about people and their connections, using deep cross-referencing and smart technology that enables researchers to find relationships between people, assets and adverse filings in public records. Mary Anne will show you how this can be done in minutes anywhere you have access to the internet.

Live webcast link will be sent 24 hours pre-event.

At Thomson Reuters, we take our role as your trusted partner to heart.  We look forward to connecting with you virtually.


Further Guidance for Exception Permitting Attorneys to Access Their Offices

The PBA has been informed, in response to an official inquiry by a state representative, that Governor Tom Wolf’s office has clarified two aspects of the new exception regarding lawyers gaining access to their offices. The legal services exception was updated on April 27 in the Wolf Administration’s Industry Operation Guidance and FAQs.

First, the Governor’s Office has clarified that clients are permitted to visit a lawyer’s office with regard to legal matters permitted under the exception.
Second, the Governor’s Office has clarified that a notary can now notarize documents in-person at a law office provided the notarization is performed in relation to legal work permitted by the exception.

Overall, the expectation is that law offices remain generally closed and that lawyers and staff members, including notaries, access offices on a limited basis to render those legal services that cannot be completed remotely and that are listed in the FAQs. The Secretary of Health’s orders also must be followed.


This information is being provided by the PBA to assist you in making your best determination about the appropriateness and correctness of accessing your law office at this time.

Supreme Court Order RE: Judicial Emergency 4/28/2020

Please find attached a copy of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s Order filed yesterday. It is a 12 page document detailing important information regarding the Judicial Emergency. Please note, this Order must be read in conjunction with our local Order dated April 20, 2020 signed by President Judge Barrasse which remains in full force and effect and works in unison with the Supreme Court Order.