US Supreme Court shuts for first time since 1918
The US Supreme Court - which had already closed its doors to the public due to the rapidly-spreading coronavirus - has announced that it will not hear legal arguments this month, the BBC has reported.
The suspension of trial arguments marks the first time since 1918 that the Supreme Court has taken such a drastic move. In announcing the decision, the court cited previous closures during the Spanish flu in the early 1900s and the yellow fever outbreak in the 18th Century.
There were several major cases set to be argued before the top US court, including one regarding the battle over President Trump's efforts to shield his tax returns and financial records. Most Supreme Court justices are elderly, putting them among the population most at risk from Covid-19.
Under the US constitution, the Supreme Court and other federal courts make up one of three branches of the federal government. The others are the legislative branch (Congress) and the executive branch (White House).