Tuesday, May 23, 2017

This and That in Court Technology - May, 2017

New US Courts Jury Kiosks

In this month's news we learn about Michigan's E-filing RFP award, two new court tech announcement from the US Federal Courts, new ideas from the Open Law Lab blog on service process in Massachusetts, the Supreme Court of India's new CMS/E-filing system, the 2016 Judicial Effectiveness Index for Bosnia and Herzegovina, and about the 2017 E-Sign Records Conference to be held in San Francisco later this year.


Michigan Courts Choose E-Filing Provider

In a press release issued on May 3, 2017, the State Court Administrative Office in Michigan announced today that it has chosen Michigan-based ImageSoft, Inc. to develop and implement an e-filing and electronic document management system for trial courts statewide.

“The goal of the statewide e-filing initiative is to improve service to the public, increase court efficiency, and reduce the cost of filing for litigants,” said State Court Administrator Milton L. Mack, Jr. “ImageSoft has been selected to provide a technology solution that ultimately enables the public to file from anywhere at any time without having to wait in line.”

A critical component of the ImageSoft solution is an integrated electronic document management system (EDMS) that will increase court efficiency by reducing the need to receive, process, store, and retrieve paper files.

ImageSoft was selected based on the results of a comprehensive evaluation process that included a review of vendor proposals, software demonstrations, and request for best and final offers."

Another memo (PDF) on the selection from the SCAO is available here.

The US Federal Courts Issue Two Court Tech Press Releases

The first, published on May 16, 2017 is titled, Interactive Database Aids the Study of Judiciary Trends.  They write:

"A recently enhanced database that houses information about civil and criminal federal cases dating to 1970 is now available to researchers and the public on the Federal Judicial Center’s website as part of a partnership with the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.

The interactive database contains docket information from district, appellate, and bankruptcy court filings and terminations, including plaintiff and defendant names, filing date, termination date, disposition of the case, type of lawsuit, jurisdiction, and docket number. It excludes judges’ names as a preventative measure against judge-shopping by plaintiffs.

Use of the database is free and it allows for multiyear data analyses. Data can be downloaded in annual and multi-year batches, or users can select their target cases using the database’s interactive feature."

The full press release is available here.

The second press release posted on May 5, 2017 is Federal Courts Using Technology to Improve Juror Experience

"In a concerted effort to make it easier for people to serve as jurors, the federal Judiciary is embracing technologies aimed at reducing wait times, paperwork, and trips to the courthouse…"

"One of the major innovations in recent years was adoption Judiciary-wide of an electronic records management system, which makes it easier to form jury pools without requiring people to trek to their local courthouses. The Jury Management System stores jury questionnaire information and runs a computer algorithm to create a random pool of qualified people.  Prior to the electronic system, the selection process was paper-based, and court staff would manually process questionnaire data and use a jury wheel, similar to a bingo wheel, to form jury pools…"

"Another innovation, the web-based eJuror system, allows prospective jurors to complete jury questionnaires online rather than filling out paper forms and mailing them to the court.  Both prospective jurors and those chosen for pools can check their reporting status anytime online rather than calling the court or making a special trip to the courthouse.  The next version of eJuror will be accessible on devices like iPhones and tablets."

The full press release is available here.

A Visual Guide to Serving Process

Margaret Hagan wrote on her Open Law Lab blog about a presentation that she made at the recent Equal Justice Conference.  It is her first attempt at a visual guide for people to learn how to “Serve Process” in Massachusetts for a guardianship case.  Her always thoughtful and colorful posts are available at:  http://www.openlawlab.com/2017/05/18/visual-guide-to-serving-process/

Supreme Court of India Announces New CMS / E-filing System

An article on the Bar and Bench website in India titled “New website of Supreme Court of India launched; Digital filing to overhaul the existing system” notes:

“Prime Minister Narendra Modi today launched a new website of the Supreme Court of India, which will feature the Integrated Case Management Information System.

The much publicised launch happened at Vigyan Bhavan in the presence of Chief Justice of India, Justice JS Khehar, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and other Supreme Court judges.
The Integrated Case Management Information System will make filing of cases digital. The digital filing would be a big improvement over the existing e-filing. With digital filing, the litigant would be required to file just the grounds of appeal to the Supreme Court and the system will automatically retrieve other documents pertaining to the case from the concerned High Court."

The Supreme Court of India’s website is at: http://supremecourt.gov.in/

And another article on the announcement is available here.

Congratulations to all involved on this important step.

MEASURE-BiH Publishes the 2016 Judicial Effectiveness Index of Bosnia and Herzegovina (JEI-BiH) Report

In a press release, we learned about the latest Judicial Effectiveness Index of Bosnia and Herzegovina.  The (JEI-BiH) is produced by USAID/MEASURE-BiH on an annual basis to measure changes and analyze trends in the BiH judiciary. JEI-BiH was developed in 2015 in close partnership with the High Judicial and Prosecutorial Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina (HJPC).

The main objective of the Index is to track trends in the BiH judiciary over time, with 2015 serving as the baseline year against which progress in future years is being tracked. As in 2015, JEI-BiH 2016 used three independent sources of data to derive a holistic picture of the BiH judiciary.

The reports webpage is available here.

E-Sign Records Conference

The signature event of ESRA’s year – eSignRecords2017 – will be held November 14-15 in San Francisco at the beautiful Parc 55 hotel.   This year the focus of eSignRecords2017 will be The Future of Digital. ESRA is planning a tremendous agenda, featuring thought leaders, innovators and legal experts across a number of disciplines.

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