Court records have been migrating from paper to electronic formats for several years now. This shift toward electronic filing, or e-filing, enables legal professionals to easily submit documents to multiple court systems and reduces court costs. In 2014, the Indiana Supreme Court announced the implementation of an e-filing system, allowing cases to be filed entirely online. This system is currently up-and-running in more than half of all Indiana courts and is anticipated to be statewide by the end of 2018. This convenient and cost-saving project will certainly impact filing procedure across the state. Let’s take a closer look at Indiana’s impending e-filing model.
Indiana’s e-filing model involves three major components:
- Court case management system: software that allows the courts to track and manage all documents, events and parties
- E-filing service provider: software that a legal profession utilizes to file a case
- E-filing manager: the go-between software that connects an e-filing service provider with the court case management system
The state provides a simple e-filing service provider to everyone, at no extra cost. However, legal professionals are able to choose from a selection of alternative, e-filing service providers. Any company may become a service provider in Indiana after undergoing a certification process through the Indiana Supreme Court. These various providers may boast many comparative features. This model allows attorneys to choose the provider that integrates most seamlessly into their law firm’s systems. A full list of e-filing service providers, as well as a comparison document, can be found here.
The courts then rely on an e-filing manager to connect the various providers to the central court case management system. The majority of Indiana’s courts use the State’s Odyssey case management system. However, the e-filing manager can integrate other case management systems as well.
The basic, simple steps for e-filing with Indiana are as follows:
- Choose a certified e-filing service provider and register to e-file with that provider.
- File a case according to the process set by your e-filing service provider.
- Track your email notifications concerning your case. You will be notified when:
- Your document is filed
- An opposing party has e-filed a document
- The court has issued an order
You should have online access to these documents and proceedings during the process.
The Indiana Judicial Branch website has several helpful resources, tutorials and guides for legal professionals seeking to become acquainted with this new process. You can find that information here. This statewide e-filing system is an exciting new development. This model should greatly facilitate the document management process, reduce court costs and offer convenience and efficiency for legal professionals in Indiana.