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E-filing and Courtlook Training Handout

Also published online- available from our help page, at subscribersupport.judici.com/900        Revised:7/6/2016

For info on all our services, see Services for Attorneys page (subscribersupport.judici.com/1800) or our Attorney Services Fact Sheet .

  1. Welcome/thanks/introductions- did you sign in and get a folder?  
  2. Per the Illinois Supreme Court, E-filing of civil cases shall be mandatory in Illinois Circuit Courts effective January 1, 2018.  Until then, it’s optional.
  3. Why are we here?  To train attorneys and staff on how to e-file through Judici, and show them other exclusive Judici services useful to the legal profession.
  4. Help resources- see folder materials, and other resources also available at subscribersupport.judici.com.

  1. Who can e-file on a case?  Anyone logged in with a user ID tied to an attorney registration number can file on cases for which that attorney is the  attorney of record..  
  1. If non-attorney staff filings- the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts is aware that staff are using attorney logins to do e-filings for the attorney of record
  2. For one attorney from e-filing on behalf of another. Supreme Court standards expressly forbids this, which  is why some attorneys opt to list their partners on the initial entry of appearance.  
  1. When will e-filing be available?
  2. Which courts have e-filing?  See COURTS page on www.judici.com

  1. File a simple motion/order for continuance
  1. Filed from the Case Information page (can also use Courtlook, if you have it)
  2. Search for your case, then click on one of the results to bring up the Case Information page
  3. Filing types- those with a filing fee, plus the court’s top ten “no-fee” filing types.
  4. Electronic service- a key benefit of e-filing
  1. Note who will be getting e-service
  1. You need this list before you can complete your proof of service documentation.  Supreme Court rules still require proof of service, so the case file will show it.
  2. Note that a true pro-se litigant has to be served conventionally
  1. When does e-service occur?  As soon as you complete your filing.  The date and time on the filestamp (which we’ll see later) will reflect your filing, not the Clerk’s review.  So filing deadlines effectively  move to midnight.  That said, the filing we link to in the service e-mail won’t show a file stamp until the court reviews your filing... which may require you to pay a filing fee which had to be verified by the court.  
  1. Provide a hearing date?
  2. Upload motion/order and proof of service
  1. When to make something a supporting document rather than including it in the lead document- when it needs to be file stamped or forwarded to a judge.

  1. Checking the status of a filing using My: Filings 
  1. After Clerk accepts filing, status will indicate this.  You also get an e-mail.
  2. View a filestamped document- indicates when the attorney filed it, not when court accepted it.  
  3. Notes on the format of filing documents:
  1. PDF file format only- if you wanted to, you could scan your filings to a PDF, but it’s easier to this is just a “Save As” feature of most modern word processors.
  1. Proposed orders must have selectable text, so use your word processor.
  1. 2X2 space in upper right corner
  2. Digital signature, starting with /s/
  1. Paying a verified/corrected fee- note that red items on the Filings page require action by the filer, usually to pay fees verified/set by the court.  Use Pay Now button.

  1. File an answer
  1. Again, search for the case/litigant and use the Case Information page
  2. Click the File Appearance/Response button
  3. Select a Filing Type. to Indicate whether you’re filing an answer or just an appearance
  4. Request verification/waiver of the filing fees- in reality all answers, EOAs and other initial filings are automatically set to require the court to verify the filing fee, since you may already paid it with a previous filing.
  5. Upload answer and Entry of Appearance/Proof of Service
  6. Finish- payment page is skipped and Filing page payment status is “Verifying”
  7. Check on the status of the filing using My: Filings.

  1. Adding a counterclaimant or third party litigant to a case
  1. Again, search for your case/client and go to the Case Information page
  2. Use the File New Litigant button

  1. Filing a new case
  1. Done from Filings page, since there is no case yet.
  2. Electronic service- not allowed when in-person service is required
  3. Upload complaint- pdf files
  4. Upload summons- court prints, completes, seals and mails back.
  5. Requesting that a document be sealed- per Supreme Court Rules 15 and 138, filer must segregate certain data onto a special document and instruct the court to seal it.  This applies to paper and electronic filings.  See local court rules for more on this.
  6. Payment of filing fees- can use a credit card, or use a paydown account to avoid service fees.
  1. What is a paydown account and how do you set one up?
  2. A paydown account can be shared by attorneys in the same firm.  If someone leaves...
  3. If your paydown account has insufficient funds, the option won’t be shown when filing.
  1. Finish
  1. More on the My: Filings page 
  1. Items with a red status require the filer’s attention
  1. Account maintenance
  1. Checking the balance in your paydown account
  2. Billing transaction history

  1. Filing proposed orders- remember that local rules require that your PDF be made in a way which lets someone copy and paste from it.

  1. Benefits of e-filing

There is no cost to filers for this service, but there are some key benefits:

  1. Benefit #1: e-filing effectively extends filing deadlines to midnight.
  2. Benefit #2- if you save 10 or 15 minutes of admin/secretary labor to make service copies and prepare the mailing, plus even minimal postage, you could save $3-4 per filing.  And you’ll save even more by avoiding overnight postage to meet filing deadlines.

  1. How to sign up for e-filing.  See e-business registration and local rules, available at subscribersupport.judici.com/400
  1. Local rules governing e-filing-  the “Top 3”, case types, filing types and failure
  2. Registration form (see http://subscribersupport.judici.com/media/AttorneyE-BusinessRegistrationForm.pdf)
  1. Why paper?
  2. What next?

  1. Brief tour of Courtlook
  1. My: Filings
  2. Multi-court searches, including display all case info on one page
  3. My: Schedule, including ical feeds to Outlook, iPhone, etc.  See Attorney Fact Sheet in folder.
  4. My: Cases- “home base” showing all open cases on which you are already the attorney of record
  1. Alternate way to e-file, as long as you aren’t re-opening a closed case
  2. Drill into a case and show History and Courtlook Docs (online case file access).  We’ll see later how to know whether your court participates.
  1. Cost of Courtlook
  1. $26/mo- covers all Judici courts.
  1. To know what courts offer Courtlook Docs and other services- check the COURTS link on www.judici.com.

 

  1. Questions?  We’ll also be around afterward.