Tuesday, February 6, 2007

US Bankruptcy Courts Protect Privacy

A December, 2006 article in the US Federal Courts newsletter "The Third Branch" described the Bankruptcy Courts response to the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 (BAPCPA). The article states that "Although the federal courts already have in place a policy on privacy and public access to electronic case files (http://www.privacy.uscourts.gov/b4amend.htm), Section 315 of the Act specifically required that the Director of the Administrative Office (AO) establish procedures for safeguarding the confidentiality of the required tax information."

The article further states that "(u)nder the guidance issued by the AO, no tax information filed with the bankruptcy court or otherwise provided by the debtor will be available to the public on the Internet, on the Judiciary’s electronic public access service that allows users to obtain case and docket information from records, or through the courts’ Case Management/Electronic Case Files system. For non-court users of any of these systems or networks, a docket report will indicate only that tax information has been filed."

MassCourts Lite Announced

On February 6, 2007 a Massachusetts Court System press release stated that "Chief Justice for Administration and Management Robert A. Mulligan today announced that the Trial Court has completed its rollout of MassCOURTS Lite to 63 divisions of the District and Boston Municipal Court Departments. MassCOURTS is the Trial Court’s web-based, electronic case management system."