Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to the services, programs and activities of state and local governments. The North Carolina Judicial Branch is committed to ensuring that individuals with disabilities can participate fully and fairly in judicial activities, programs, and services.
If you are an individual with a disability who needs a reasonable accommodation, contact the local Disability Access (ADA) Coordinator
for the county where the hearing or other court activity is scheduled.
The N.C. Judicial Branch uses the title of Disability Access Coordinator rather than ADA Coordinator to reduce confusion – Assistant District Attorneys (ADAs) are court employees who work with criminal matters.
If there is no designated Disability Access Coordinator, contact the Office of the Clerk of Superior Court
for that county. Your request will be addressed individually, according to a statewide protocol
Be prepared to provide the following essential information:
- Name of the individual needing the assistance
- Exact type of accommodation(s) needed
- Case file number
- Date and time of the trial or hearing
- Is the individual needing assistance the plaintiff, defendant, juror, witness, or court observer?
- If applicable, the contact information for the attorney representing the individual
Each county in North Carolina has the responsibility to provide an accessible courthouse building with needed ramps, elevators, assistive listening systems for courtrooms, proper signage, accessible restrooms and other accessible features (G.S. 7A-302). Contact the county manager with any concerns about the courthouse building.
Deaf or hard of hearing:
North Carolina law (G.S. Chapter 8B) has long required that a qualified interpreter be provided in any civil or criminal proceeding for any party or witness who is deaf or hard of hearing. Upon a finding by the court (judge, clerk, or other judicial employee) that a sign language interpreter is required, the court will make arrangements to appoint a qualified interpreter and will pay the interpreter's fees. To help judges, clerks and others, the NCAOC has prepared Guidelines for Accommodating individuals Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing in the Courts.
Access to Justice Video:
This video addresses how to make our court system more accessible to individuals with disabilities. It describes general and specific accommodations that can be provided in court settings. Keep in mind that accommodations are person-specific so the examples are not exhaustive.
A Grievance Procedure is available for complaints from the general public about compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The N.C. Administrative Office of the Courts (NCAOC) Disabilities Access Coordinator is identified in the grievance procedure and may be contacted with questions and requests for assistance that could not be answered locally.