Thursday, September 12, 2013

Pre-CTC 2013 This and That in Court Technology

CTC-2013 Coming Soon

Baltimore Convention Center
We are looking forward to seeing everyone at CTC-2013 next week in Baltimore, Maryland (September 17-19).  We will try to post a note or two but as any of you who have attended the conference knows, it is a busy time.  Keep an eye on the NCSC Twitter account (@StateCourts) and the conference website at: for news.

For more this and that click on the read more link below …

Marion County West Virginia First with E-Filing

WDTV television posted a story and video on August 26, 2013 regarding the first E-filing pilot in the State of West Virginia.  Marion County is the first of 14 counties in the state to implement their new program.

E-Filing Fees Not a Tax - Redux

We heard from our friend, Mark Schwartz at the One Legal Blog that they had reprinted our post on E-Filing fees.  He wrote later that they had received a rejoinder and so I responded.  Click here to see the full post and response.

Michigan Court Goes Fully Electronic

Via Press Release from ImageSoft, August 27, 2013

“The 13th Circuit Court, comprising Grand Traverse County, Antrim and Leelanau, Mich., has blazed the trail in high-tech courts by becoming the state’s first fully electronic court with the expansion of its electronic case file management system.

Most courts have electronic case management systems in place, but continue to manage the case file from a paper folder.  The shift to an electronic case file -- or “paper-on-demand” court -- portends significant savings and greater efficiencies for the court and swifter and better-informed decision making by judges as information is now readily available 24/7 and easily shared by all, and bottlenecks in the courts are cleared.

In a fully electronic court, digital documents replace paper documents and automated processes replace manual processes as the court conducts its daily business. Judges hear cases at the bench using an electronic case file with all necessary information immediately accessible to them on a computer.

To accomplish the transition from paper-based to digital processes, the 13th Circuit Court has worked with ImageSoft, Inc., of Southfield, Mich., to implement an electronic document management solution to consolidate all the court’s documents and information into a single, central repository.  The solution enables a paper-on-demand court by providing a way to store, retrieve, secure, route, sign and file documents all within a digital environment.

Canadian Bar Association Releases Equal Justice Report

A new report “Reaching Equal Justice: An Invitation to Envision and Act” was released by the Canadian Bar Association in August, 2013.

The introduction to the report states: “The CBA Envisioning Equal Justice Initiative considers four systemic barriers that are blocking efforts to reach equal justice and proposes means to overcome them. The barriers are:

» Lack of public profile
» Inadequate strategy and coordination
» No effective mechanisms for measuring change
» Gaps in our knowledge about what works and how to achieve substantive change

The initiative focuses on human justice, on `people law' - legal issues, problems and disputes experienced by people (including small businesses). Of course, the justice system has an impact on corporations, organizations and institutions, and access issues can arise for these bodies as well, but they are outside of the scope of this report. This summary report sets out the Committee's proposed strategic framework for reaching equal justice.

The project website is at:
And a PDF version of the report is available at:


NCSC Releases Jury Management Systems Requirements Report

On August 28, 2013 our colleagues at the NCSC, John Matthias, Paula Hannaford-Agor, and James Harris submitted their report (PDF) on the future of jury systems for the District Courts of Minnesota.  As posted in the NCSC Jur-E Bulletin:

“The project produced a set of requirements for jury management automation that started with a blank slate using a new approach: identifying the business capabilities needed to manage the jury function.  The information contained in this report will be invaluable to other jurisdictions that are considering purchasing jury management software or redesigning their current software. “

Some Interesting Legal Information Systems Developments

Via Rob Richards at the Legal Informatics Blog ( )

We learned that Ms. Serena Manzoli has started a list of legal architecture and design projects blog.

Very interesting blog, PrawfsBlawg, posts “Visualizing SCOTUS Doctrine II – Dissents and Competing Traditions and Visualizing SCOTUS Doctrine III – Network Analysis Compared by Assistant Professor of Law Colin Starger of the University of Baltimore presents concepts for visual “doctrinal maps” of US Supreme Court decisions and precedent.

And we learned about work being done to create a Global Patent Map representing the relationships between innovations.  The work is briefly described in an MIT Technology Review article posted on September 2, 2013.

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