Tuesday, December 18, 2012

E-Courts 2012 Wrap-Up

I hope that many of your reading this post were able to attend last week’s E-Courts 2012 Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.  This article discusses some highlights.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Singapore E-Courts Presentation

The Singapore Supreme Court presentation on their new Integrated Electronic Litigation System (iLES) at the E-Courts 2012 conference is available for viewing/download by clicking here.

CTC 2013 Super Saver Rate Announced

The NCSC announced a special super-saver rate for next years Court Technology Conference to be held in Baltimore, Maryland from September 17-19, 2012.  The rate is $500 and is available until December 31, 2012.  Click on the "Register Now" link at the conference website to sign up.

E-Courts 30 Tech Tips in 30 MInutes

The Tuesday, December 11, 2012 E-Courts Conference presentation by NCSC staff, 30 Tech Tips in 30 Minutes is available by clicking here.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Massachusetts Courts Release E-Filing Pilot RFP

The Massachusetts Courts have released an RFP to pilot E-filing services for several of their courts.  To access the RFP go to their Commonwealth's Procurement and Solicitation System Comm-Pass at http://www.comm-pass.com/ and search (see bottom of the page) for reference document number "MATCourts 2012 1"

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Monday, December 3, 2012

Leading Vendors Speak at E-Courts 2012

One of the most interesting part of the education program at every E-Courts Conference are the Vendor Bonus Sessions.  We have seen groundbreaking ideas such as Chief Judge Connie Steinheimer's CASEaDia with Tybera in 2008 and Tyler's statewide electronic courts implementation approach in 2010.  Here is a list of the sessions scheduled this year:

8:00 am  - ImageSoft:  Paving the Last Mile to a Paper-On-Demand Court
8:30 am  - SUSTAIN
9:00 am  - Thomson Reuters:  Expand your Capabilities with Thomson Reuters
9:30 am  - Tyler Technologies
10:00 am - USCourts.com:  E-Filing -- The Judge's Perspective
10:30 am - CourtView:  Celebrate Your Differences! (a new approach to case flow challenges)
11:00 am - Tybera:  Puzzled by eFiling?: Six Things We’ve Learned from Implementing Integrated eFiling Systems.

A fire hose of ideas at E-Courts 2012

Friday, November 30, 2012

The Googling Juror - An Update

Our good friend (and CTC-2011 speaker) New Zealand Judge David Harvey has updated his work on jurors and the Internet.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

State of Washington Issues Appellate Court RFP

The Washington State Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) is soliciting Proposals from qualified Vendors to  acquire a commercial off-the-shelf Enterprise Content Management System (ECMS) and the services required to implement the ECMS, validate it, and deploy the ECMS in the Washington State Supreme Court and three (3) Washington State Court of Appeals Divisions.

One can register and also obtain a copy of the RFP at: www.courts.wa.gov/procure

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Fresno California Seeks CMS

The Superior Court of California, County of Fresno, is seeking one replacement case management system for two legacy case management systems – Banner and CCMS V2 - implementing in stages, one CMS for all case types.

LegalXML ECF 4.01 Approved as Committee Specification - Updated 12/9/12

We learned today that the LegalXML ECF committee has voted to approve the 4.01 draft and has forwarded it as a candidate OASIS specification.  Version 4.01 is a maintenance release that addresses minor schema and definition issues.

To view the specification click here.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Friday, November 2, 2012

Keeping Authentication Simple

Courts have concerns about the use of their published electronic information.  The following excellent article recommends some solutions.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Sacramento Superior Court Announces Statewide CMS RFP

Sacramento Superior Court seeks to enter into a Master Software license and Services Agreement with suitable vendors for an enterprise case management solution capable of replacing the antiquated CMS's for the Superior Courts of California.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Illinois Supreme Court Approves Statewide E-Filing Standards

By Illinois Supreme Court press release, October 24, 2012

Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride and the Illinois Supreme Court announced new statewide standards and new and amended Supreme Court rules that will allow all courts in Illinois to begin electronic filing of court documents in civil cases.

Friday, October 26, 2012

E-Filing and Online Dispute Resolution

The Canadian Forum on Court Technology generated some ideas on how E-Filing and ODR could potentially complement one another.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Pennsylvania Courts Announce Online Forms

A press release from the Pennsylvania Courts on October 18, 2012 describes their new Internet forms are designed to "break down language barriers for families".

NIEM 3.0 “Coming Soon” Website Announced

The National Information Exchange Model program has posted a new website for practitioners to track the progress of the new version 3.0 development.

Friday, October 12, 2012

More PDF/A News

A couple of announcements regarding the international PDF/A standard that courts should know. - Updated with link to the ISO draft standard.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

CITOC Announces Innovation Awards Competition

The Court Information Technology Officers Consortium (CITOC) is pleased to present the inaugural CITOC Innovation Awards.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

This and That in Court Tech – September, 2012

News from and about the NCSC, Virginia Electronic Notary Statute, IJIS Institute, E-Paper, the Legal Information Institute, and the Canadian Forum on Court Technology.

Friday, September 14, 2012

All-in-One Desktop PC’s and Virtualization in the Courtroom

Articles on All-in-One computers often used as part of the judge’s electronic bench and virtual desktop software in the courtroom are discussed.

American Probation and Parole Association Issues Procurement Guide

APPA has issued a procurement guide for automated case management systems that provides structure and advise that the courts can use as well.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Last Mile - Tyler “Judge Edition” Report

One of the leading commercial court automation companies, Tyler Technologies reports on their “SessionWorks Judge Edition” program.

Courtesy of the Oregon eCourt The QUARTERLY newsletter

Friday, August 31, 2012

A Lot of This and That in Court Tech – End of August, 2012

There is a lot of court tech news including the E-Courts 2012 program, US Federal Courts revise jury instructions regarding social media,  Navigating the Hazards of E-Discovery manual, E-Notarization in Virginia, location based verification, another court website hacked, two good articles from IJCA Journal, and an award for a CMS in the Catalonia, Spain courts.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Court Case Management Systems 2012 Part 3: The Court Organization, Users, and Roles

Court Case Management Systems must have the ability to define and capture the court’s organizational structure and user work roles in the basic design.

Monday, August 6, 2012

This and That in Court Tech – August, 2012

News about US Federal Court Cameras Pilot, CITOC E-Filing Webinar, Why Jurors Go Online, Courts and Big Data, and some resources for planning for Microsoft Windows 8

Thursday, August 2, 2012

NJ Governor vetoes bill to help pay for court technology & indigent defense; becomes 2nd state governor to veto court technology bills this year

Cross-posted to Gavel to Gavel

Earlier this week NJ Governor Chris Christie's veto of AB 763, a bill that would among other things raise various court fees to help pay for court technology, was delivered to the Assembly. The governor's veto occurred in late June but wasn't filed until July 30. The bill, as approved by the legislature, is similar to one vetoed by South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley earlier this year and later overridden.

AB 763 provides the Supreme Court may, subject to limitations provided in the bill, adopt Rules of Court to revise or supplement filing fees and other statutory fees payable to the court for the sole purpose of funding: (1) the development, maintenance, and administration of a “Statewide digital e-court information system,” that incorporates electronic filing, service of process, document and case management, financial management, and public access to digital court records; and (2) Legal Services of New Jersey.

The veto now goes back to the Assembly. Its prospects are unclear: the original version passed the Assembly on March 2012 on a 64-14 vote. The Senate passed its version 24-11, shy of the 27 votes needed to override. The Assembly then re-passed the Senate amended version, but on a 48-30 vote; it would have 52 votes in the Assembly to override.

Monday, July 30, 2012

State Court Case Management System Acquisition Strategies

By Tom C. Clarke, National Center for State Courts

It is a truism of American courts that no state is exactly like another.  This is one of many reasons why state court systems have a difficult time comparing themselves to ostensible peer states.  Publications like NCSC’s State Court Organization try to compare apples to apples along multiple dimensions, but it remains a mostly intractable problem.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Video: Texas State Court Administrator testifies before House committee on e-filing in the state

Cross-posted at Gavel to Gavel

At this point, at least some courts in nearly every U.S. state have some form of e-filing of court documents (details can be found at the National Center for State Court's e-filing Resource Guide), including Texas. That state's system was the subject of an interim meeting of the House Committee on Judiciary & Civil Jurisprudence.

Monday, July 16, 2012

More on PDF

The PDF document file format is confusing to many because it can do so much. This post provides a list of resources that may help.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

This and That in Court Tech - July 2012

 E-courts education program, Canadian court tech conference, SJI assists Minnesota self-represented E-filing, mandatory E-filing in Utah and Florida, and Pennsylvania tweets court rules.

Monday, June 25, 2012

South Carolina legislature overrides governor, allows CJ to set e-filing fees to pay for court technology

Cross-posted at Gavel to Gavel

I mentioned two weeks ago the e-filing fees situation in South Carolina. In sum, the legislature unanimously adopted HB 4821, which would have allowed the state's chief justice to set an e-filing fee to pay for court technology
for filing court documents by electronic means from an integrated electronic filing (e-filing) system owned and operated by the South Carolina Judicial Department in an amount set by the Chief Justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court and all fees must be remitted to the South Carolina Judicial Department to be dedicated to the support of court technology
Despite the legislature's unanimity, the governor vetoed the bill, arguing no "branch of government should be provided with such comprehensive, unilateral authority to impose fees without regulatory or other comparable review." The South Carolina legislature has now voted to override the governor's veto: 93-14 in the House and 39-3 in the Senate.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Court Case Management Systems 2012 Part 1: It’s About Change

It’s all about change.  The technology has changed.  The expectations have changed.  Therefore, court case management has changed.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

This and That in Court Tech - June, 2012

News about Oregon's eCourts project, a new blog by ProBono.net, LawTech Camp 2012, New Mexico's website attack, Password security, and an excellent change management article.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Court Case Management 2012

Some of my colleagues and I are planning on writing a series of articles on Court Case Management Systems over the next year (or two).

Friday, June 1, 2012

Courts Go Mobile

Recently I've been looking at various court's efforts to provide information via mobile devices (Smart Phones and Pad/Tablet Computers) and there is some very nice work out there.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

More This and That in Court Tech - May 2012

We have more court technology news to share for the month of May, 2012.  Notes include a radio interview for a CMS upgrade in Ohio, a Washington state courts report, podcasts from the Center for Court Innovation, NIEM Technical Training course announcement, and the LexUM Decisia cloud service.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

All Federal Courts Now Accepting Electronic Filing

Via Press Release - The DC-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has begun accepting electronic filings via the judiciary’s Case Management-Electronic Case Files (CM/ECF) system, joining every other federal appellate, district, and bankruptcy court in doing so.

CM/ECF provides courts enhanced and updated docket management. It allows courts to maintain case documents in electronic form. And it gives each court the option of permitting case documents – pleadings, motions, petitions – to be filed with the court over the Internet. Implementation of that option began a decade ago, and now is complete.

You can learn more about CM/ECF here.

The Benefits of Automating Your Employee Performance Reviews

By Sean Conrad*

Public sector organizations face ongoing pressures to be transparent, efficient and accountable. Employee performance reviews are a critical tool for ensuring staff know what is expected of them, and are accountable for their results and performance. Yet many public sector organizations struggle to do employee reviews.

Friday, May 11, 2012

This and That in Court Tech – May 2012

News about E-filing in five states, courtroom tweeting, the NAJIS annual conference, Peoria’s new CMS, and a history of the establishment of West Publishing.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Missouri Court CIO Job Opening

We at the NCSC are very sorry to learn that our good friend, Jim Roggero, the CIO for the Missouri Office of State Courts Administrator has decided to retire.  However, his and his staff's good work continues, and so the job opening has been posted (PDF) at: http://www.courts.mo.gov/file.jsp?id=5600 

Also please note that there are several other technical staff job opportunities at the OSCA listed at: http://www.courts.mo.gov/page.jsp?id=3191

We will post more about Jim and his significant legacy at a later date.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Montana Issues Statewide E-Filing RFP

The Montana Supreme Court, Office of the Court Administrator has issued an RFP for E-filing.

An Electronic Signature Maxim

By: Vojtěch Kment, http://www.linkedin.com/in/vojtechkment

Summary:  An E-signature Deployment Maxim: 1. Replaces the handwritten signature; 2. Legally permissible; 3. Evidence of intent; 4. False identification avoided/minimized; 5. Easy to use, affordable and widely compatible.

(Maxim: A brief expression of a general truth, principle, or rule of conduct http://www.thefreedictionary.com/Maxim )

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Internet Bar Organization Offers Webinar and Research

By Mr. Jeff Aresty, Internet Bar Organization

As we all know, government’s everywhere are confronted with limited budgets and court systems are suffering.  Therefore, many courts are using technology creatively to increase the throughput of their caseloads.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Federal Courts Update CM/ECF Case Management System Plans

US Federal Courts sends news of several automation related efforts including case management, discovery practice recommendations for electronically stored evidence, kiosk use in US Federal Probation offices, and videoconferencing.

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Need for Court E-Forms Identification (Meta-Data) Standards - Part 2

In Part 1 of this series we looked at the ability to create XML meta-data identifiers in commonly used word processing and PDF applications. In this part we will explore the benefits of electronic forms identification.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Need for Court E-Forms Identification (Meta-Data) Standards - Part 1

There is a fundamental problem with the way that electronic court forms have been implemented.  This series discusses some ideas to address the current shortcomings.

Monday, April 16, 2012

What Education Programs Would You Like to See at e-Courts 2012?

Take the e-Courts Survey!

Registration is now open and planning is underway for the e-Courts 2012 Conference. The strength and relevance of e-Courts' education program is vital to the conference's success and to your professional development. To ensure the program meets your needs, please take a few minutes to complete this brief survey at:

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Michigan State Courts Release E-Filing RFP and RFI

The Michigan Supreme Court, State Court Administrative Office (SCAO) is seeking proposals and information for two initiatives.  The first is a Request for Proposal for a statewide Electronic Filing Manager (EFM) and Electronic Document Management System (EDMS).  The SCAO is also requesting information from potential vendors who can serve as Electronic Filing Service Providers (EFSP).

Monday, April 2, 2012

Friday, March 30, 2012

Register Now for e-Courts 2012 — It's a Win-Win Situation

Booking e-Courts 2012 is Now Open!

December 2012 marks the 10th anniversary of e-Courts in Las Vegas. This year's e-Courts will deliver two-and-a-half days of real-world solutions to the technology challenges facing today's courts.

e-Courts education sessions feature the most in-depth and current information that address the technology needs of judges, court managers, technologists, and other court professionals. e-Courts also has earned a reputation for hosting one of the most effective exhibit shows available -- it's smaller, offering opportunity for one-on-one discussion with vendors about your court's needs.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Thursday, March 22, 2012

This and That in Court Tech, March 2012 Edition

News about state E-filing legislation, OCR in PDF readers, San Francisco Superior Court E-filing RFP, Federal Courts CM/ECF progress, Microsoft Zoom.it, the E-Courts 2012 conference website, and the Wired Magazine's future of the process server.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Pennsylvania Issues One Millionth E-Citation

A press release from the Administrative Office of the Pennsylvania Courts and the Pennsylvania State Police on March 14, 2012:

One Million State Police Traffic Citations Issued Electronically
Supreme Court, PA State Police E-filing Initiative Improves Safety, Court Efficiency

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Best Court Websites?

How about it readers.

What are your nominations for the best court websites?

Please share in the comments section below.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Going Green with E-filing

This article was originally published in the Winter, 2008 edition of the Texas Paralegal Journal and is posted here with their permission.  It provides additional arguments for savings via E-filing as discussed in our earlier post: Calculating an E-Court Return on Investment (ROI)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Submissions for Adaptive Case Management Award Announced

A call for nominations for the Adaptive Case Management Global Excellence Awards 2012 has been released.  The deadline for submitting a 250 word abstract, which answers the following three questions, is February 28, 2012.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Calculating an E-Court Return on Investment (ROI)

By James E. McMillan, NCSC; Carole D. Pettijohn, Ph.D., Director of Technology Services for R.B. "Chips" Shore, Manatee County Clerk of Court; Jennifer K. Berg, Esq., Sustainable Practice Leader, Northgate Environmental Management.

As it is legislative budget season for the USA state courts, it is a good time to look at the excellent work that Manatee County, Florida has done in calculating the return on investment of converting from a physical paper-based to an electronic-based organization.  In addition, this article will also discuss the environmental cost savings benefits of going “E”.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Glass World

Today all of us techies here at the NCSC were marveling at this video posted by Corning Glass titled "A Day Made of Glass" that shows various scenarios how glass displays are used now (photovoltaic and handheld display glass) and will be used in the future.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Attorney Technology Motivations?

I don't know if it is just me or if others have noticed this but when dealing with some attorneys, particularly on the subject of E-filing there is often very strange push-back...as in, why would I want E-filing, online access, etc.?

The "3 Geeks and a Law Blog" (thanks Rob) has posted a very interesting article titled "Staying Relevant - Part 4: Technology and the Bottom-line".

They attribute some attorney resistance to technological change as "Cost-plus thinking" explaining:
"In a cost-plus world, firms react by draining the company of capital every December 31st. This mind-set does not view technology as an investment, but instead as a necessary expense. Worse yet, technology negatively impacts the number of hours and respective revenue generated by them. So why would a firm invest in it?"
The article continues with some excellent examples and counter-arguments to this worldview.  But I would also suggest that this "argument" should both inform and temper the court's response to criticisms of their technology initiatives.

Friday, January 20, 2012

This and That in Court Tech - January, 2012

During the past month we have found quite a few interesting bits of information that we would like to share with our readers below.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Federal Bankruptcy Courts Provide Online Chat Help

I have often told acquaintances that one goal of court automation is to allow court staff to be able to have enough time to answer the telephone.  But now the courts have another option. The December, 2011 edition of the US Federal Court newsletter, The Third Branch has an article on Bankruptcy courts describing their implementation of online chat titled "Chat Live Now!"

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Data Visualization

Graphic from Wikipedia.org
An area of automation that the courts have generally ignored has been data visualization.  While my colleague, Dr. Ingo Keilitz has worked for many years on digital dashboard concepts, there is a lot that can be done.

One excellent example was posted by the authors at Computational Legal Studies  that presents "The Development of Structure in the Citation Network of the United States Supreme Court".  This two minute online video of a growing "network diagram" representing the early relationship of cases is fascinating.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Maricopa County ICJIS Director Job Announcement

We received the following message yesterday to pass along to our community:

Maricopa County (located in Phoenix, AZ) has an outstanding career opportunity for ICJIS (Integrated Criminal Justice Information System) Director.  The successful candidate will establish and oversee a project management agency to coordinate the planning, development, implementation and maintenance of and ICJIS system for Maricopa County.  Salary range: $101,296 - $157,019/Yr.

Mobile Legal Services

Our good friends at Cornell University Law School Legal Information Institute (via Rob Richards) posted a very interesting article on December 22, 2011 regarding the potential for the use of mobile telephone messaging/SMS for legal services.  The author, Sean Martin McDonald (founder of frontlinesms.com), argues that the ubiquity of mobile telephones provides great potential for many legal services including legal client intake and referral, client and case management.  And I would add training and document verification as other possibilities.

Bridging "the last mile" between the clients and legal services (including courts) are important.  The author concludes the article with the following:
"I don’t think any of this will square me with my property-law professor.  I’m not sure I’ll ever fix property law.  But I do think that by reaching out to new populations using the technologies in their pockets, we can make a difference in the way people interact with the law. And even if that’s just a little bit, even if it just enables one percent more people to protect their homes, start a business, or pursue a better life, isn’t that worth it?"
Hear, hear!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Hey US Postal Service - The Courts Need This!

We're all back at work at the NCSC and want to first wish everyone a good and productive 2012.

Over the break we heard of several services offered by the Postal Service in Switzerland that would be extremely useful to the US Courts.

The first service is called IncaMail (PDF document link) that provides secure encrypted e-mail.  An interesting aspect is that "during the initial (first time) registration, both the e-mail address and the physical address of the user are verified by sending an activation code."