Wednesday, July 06, 2005

I like electronic filing, but this may be going too far

The 4th DCA just posted new electronic filing rules - here's the link.

In addition to requiring all pleadings and transcripts to be filed by email or disk (Word, WordPerfect or PDF), the court is requiring all appendices to petitions to be filed electronically! So now you'll have to get all the stuff that was introduced into the lower record scanned into PDF format if it wasn't electronic to begin with - and there's no exemption for oversize things like maps.

IMHO, that's going a bit overboard, even today. It means that a party to a cert appeal has to go to the official record, get documents that the party did not create or produce and make electronic versions in order to file a cert petition. Some board clerks might not let you do it.

BUT the lesson and direction are clear folks: start putting all of your presentation materials together electronically and burn them to CDs as you're going. File the CD with a paper index for the clerk's benefit that can be used to indicate what documents did or did not actually get entered. Not a big problem in court practice, where the clerk and judge usually do a good job of tracking such things, but generally not (to date) part of practice before local quasi-judicial bodies.

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