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United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

Visiting the Court

The National Courts Building is located on Madison Place between Pennsylvania Avenue and H Street, N.W., on the east side of Lafayette Square (the President’s Park), across from the White House, in downtown Washington, D.C.

The Treasury Department, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and St. John’s Church and Parish House are nearby.  The Dolley Madison House, the former Cosmos Club, and the Tayloe House, famous landmarks fronting on Lafayette Square adjacent to the National Courts Building, are a part of the courthouse complex.

Howard T. Markey National Courts Building

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

717 Madison Place, NW

Washington, DC 20439

(202) 275-8000

Parking

Public on-site parking at the National Courts Building is not available.  There are private, commercial garages within one or two blocks of the National Courts Building.

Taxi or Car Service

Madison Place is closed to vehicular traffic.  State your destination as “1520 H Street, Northwest,” “H and Vermont, Northwest,” or “H and Madison Place, Northwest.”  An entryway to the courtyard of the National Courts Building is located on the south side of H Street, N.W. adjacent to the Dolley Madison House at 1520 H Street, N.W.  From this entrance, you can access to the main entrance to the courthouse.

The National Courts Building is accessible off of the Orange, Blue, and Silver Metro Lines (McPherson Square Station, White House exit) and the Red Metro Line (Farragut North Station, K Street exit -or- Metro Center, 12th Street exit).

Access the entrance to the National Courts Building either from Madison Place on Lafayette Square or the entryway on the south side of H Street, N.W., adjacent to the Dolley Madison House at 1520 H Street, N.W.  From this entrance, you can access to the main entrance to the courthouse.

The accessible entrance and exit to the National Courts Building is located off of H Street, between Vermont Avenue and 15th Street, N.W. (through the brick breezeway).

Lobby elevators go to all courthouse floors, including the Clerk’s Office on the fourth floor.  The Clerk’s Office intake area includes accessible counter and research table space.  The seating in Courtrooms 201 and 203 requires no use of stairs.  The seating in Courtroom 402 requires the use of stairs, and an access lift is available to the public.  Please let a member of the courtroom or security staff know if you require lift access.

U.S. General Services Administration Building Regulations (external) permit trained service animals in the National Courts Building.

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In addition to the below security screening regulations, all visitors to the National Courts Building are subject to the U.S. General Services Administration Building Regulations (external).

Couriers must use the main entrance for delivery of briefs and other papers and follow instructions from the court security officers.

Delivery of large or bulky items must be made at the loading dock off of H Street, N.W. and arranged ahead of time with court staff.  Vendors should contact their procurement point of contact to schedule these items. 

The National Courts Building can be accessed from the east side of Lafayette Square, to the left of the White House.  The gates lead into the courtyard, with the public entrance located past the fountain.  From time to time, these gates and public access to Lafayette Square are closed.  In that case, use the H Street entrance.

The National Courts Building is also accessible from the south side of H Street, N.W., between Vermont Avenue, N.W. and 15th Street, N.W.  This entrance is adjacent to the Dolley Madison House at 1520 H Street, N.W.  From this entrance, you can also access to the main entrance to the courthouse.

The National Courts Building is open to the public from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Eastern) on weekdays excluding federal and court holidays.

  • The Clerk’s Office is open to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • The Circuit Library is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  The Circuit Library is not open to the general public.

Photography and video recording inside of the courthouse are generally prohibited under U.S. General Services Administration Building Regulations (external) without prior permission.

The photographing, recording, or broadcasting of court sessions is prohibited.

All visitors to the National Courts Building and their belongings are subject to search upon entering the courthouse.  Visitors must go through metal detectors (magnetometers) that are staffed by court security officers and belongings will be screened through x-ray machines.  This process is very similar to the security screening process at airports.

In order to ensure a speedy and efficient process, please adhere to the following rules:

  • The following items are prohibited: weapons and self-defense items of any type, knives and any items with a cutting or sharp edge, aerosol containers, tools, chemicals, flammable or explosive materials.
  • To speed the screening process, please remove all items in your pockets before passing through the magnetometer.  Place any items in your bags or place them in the trays provided by the court security officer before you go through the metal detector.  This will save you time and may prevent you from having to be scanned a second time with a hand-held wand.
  • A court security officer may ask you to remove your belt, any jewelry (including watches and large earrings), and shoes before proceeding through the magnetometer.
  • After security screening, you will need to present a government-issued photo identification and will be issued a visitor’s badge to be worn while in the building.  Please return your visitor’s badge to one of the security officers as you leave the courthouse after your visit.
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