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The original item was published from 9/21/2021 9:39:00 AM to 9/27/2021 12:08:34 PM.

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Posted on: August 27, 2021

[ARCHIVED] Rights to review an isolation/quarantine order.

HAYWOOD COUNTY HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES AGENCY

157 Paragon Parkway, Clyde, NC 28721-9481

Ira Dove, Agency Director

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I have been given a verbal or written notice of isolation/quarantine. What are my rights to a review of that order?

North Carolina General Statutes Section 130A-145(d) outlines those rights:

(d) When quarantine or isolation limits the freedom of movement of a person or animal or of access to a person or animal whose freedom of movement is limited, the period of limited freedom of movement or access shall not exceed 30 calendar days. Any person substantially affected by that limitation may institute in superior court in Wake County or in the county in which the limitation is imposed an action to review that limitation. The official who exercises the quarantine or isolation authority shall give the persons known by the official to be substantially affected by the limitation reasonable notice under the circumstances of the right to institute an action to review the limitation. If a person or a person's representative requests a hearing, the hearing shall be held within 72 hours of the filing of that request, excluding Saturdays and Sundays. The person substantially affected by that limitation is entitled to be represented by counsel of the person's own choice or if the person is indigent, the person shall be represented by counsel appointed in accordance with Article 36 of Chapter 7A of the General Statutes and the rules adopted by the Office of Indigent Defense Services. The court shall reduce or terminate the limitation unless it determines, by the preponderance of the evidence, that the limitation is reasonably necessary to prevent or limit the conveyance of a communicable disease or condition to others.

Here is a description of the process:

1. When an isolation/quarantine order is issued (verbally or in writing), the Health Department will give the affected person reasonable notice under the circumstances of the right to institute a court case to review the limitations imposed by the order.

The Health Department will, in the cases where a phone contact is made to issue a verbal isolation/quarantine order, give the notice verbally. The Health Department will also post this hearing information on the County website for reference by the affected person.

2. When the statute refers to “a right to institute an action,” an “action” is a civil lawsuit, filed in the Haywood County Superior Court.

3. Filing an “action” is normally done by the affected person hiring their own attorney to represent them, although a person could file the action themselves, without an attorney.

4. If the person affected who desires a hearing is indigent and cannot afford a lawyer to file the action, then that person can apply to the court for the appointment of a lawyer to represent them, subject to the rules that apply to the appointment of counsel for indigent persons.

5. Once the action is filed in the Haywood County Superior Court, the court will hold a hearing within 72 hours (not counting weekends).

6. At the hearing, the court will consider the reasonableness of the limitations imposed by the quarantine/isolation order. At the hearing, after hearing from the affected person and the Health Department, the court can: a. Uphold the order, b. Amend the order, or c. Rescind the order.

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