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Detailed Guide: Alabama

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Allows Cameras? Yes (with permission)
Exceptions: None

Audio or Video Webcast? No
Media Guide Available? Yes
Allows Cell Phones to Record Video? No (judges can authorize on a case-by-case basis)

Trial and appellate courtroom coverage is permissible if the Supreme Court of Alabama has approved a plan for the courtroom in which coverage will occur. The plan must contain certain safeguards to assure that coverage will not detract from or degrade court proceedings, or otherwise interfere with a fair trial. If such a plan has been approved, a trial judge may, in the exercise of “sound discretion” permit coverage if: (1) in a criminal proceeding, all accused persons and the prosecutor give their written consent and (2) in a civil proceeding, all litigants and their attorneys give their written consent. Following approval of their coverage plans, appellate courts may authorize coverage if the parties and their attorneys give their written consents. In both trial and appellate contexts, the court must halt coverage during any time that a witness, party, juror, or attorney expressly objects. In an appellate setting, it must also halt coverage during any time that a judge expressly objects to coverage.

Links: Authority
Canon 3A(7), 3A(7A), and 3A(7B), Alabama Canons of Judicial Ethics, Ala. Code, Vol. 23A (Rules of Alabama Supreme Court)

Links: Other
Media Coverage Plan of the Supreme Court of Alabama
Court of Criminal Appeals of Alabama Courtroom Media Plan

Last edited: December 12, 2022