NEWS FROM U.S. DISTRICT COURT
May 2, 2012
ELECTRONIC vs. TRADITIONAL (MANUAL) FILING: As you know, we have been a mandatory electronic filing district since January 1, 2010. There are, however, some documents that are exempt from the mandatory filing requirement. In an effort to clarify, we have broken them down by case type. The following documents are exempt from the mandatory filing requirement and must be filed by delivering the original to the clerk:
1. Criminal Cases
a. Initiating documents (complaints, informations, and indictments);
b. All pleadings in a sealed case, including all cases involving a juvenile defendant;
c. Motions to Seal (and the documents to which they refer);
d. All documents containing a defendant’s original signature, including plea documents; and
e. Notices of Appeal.
2. Civil Cases
a. Initiating documents (complaints and summonses); and
b. Motions to Seal (and the documents to which they refer).
VIDEO HEARINGS: If you practice criminal law in District Court, you may have participated in a video hearing. Usually these hearings are intra-district hearings, meaning the defendant and counsel appear in one divisional office and the judge appears in another divisional office. These hearings are arranged by chambers. Sometimes one of the parties in a criminal case requests an inter-district hearing between our district and an out-of-district location. These hearings are more complicated because our equipment is not always compatible with the out-of-district equipment and it is sometimes necessary to arrange for a conference bridge. When attorneys request an inter-district video hearing in a criminal case, it is the attorney’s responsibility to gather contact information from the out-of-district location and relay this information to the Clerk’s Office. Hearings may also be held by video in civil cases. Our district has adopted a protocol for the use of interactive video conferencing in civil cases. The protocol can be found on our website under the For Attorneys tab by clicking Forms and selecting Protocol for the Use of Interactive Video Conferencing (Civil).