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E-filing eases legalese in Colorado

A new era of filing civil court documents electronically is underway in Colorado.

In August, e-filing was implemented in Arapahoe County District Court as the first step toward enabling all of Colorado’s civil courts to accept electronic filings in civil, probate, water and domestic relations cases. Other case types, including criminal, will be addressed by the state next year.

Court officials say that delivering documents electronically through a secure Web site is more efficient than the traditional method of filing and serving paper documents to parties in a case. Electronically stored documents are also instantly accessible to all parties, as well as to judges and clerks. And judges are able to send orders and render decisions directly from their computers. “Colorado is setting the standard by bringing much needed changes to an antiquated, manual system,” says Bob Roper, the Colorado Judicial Branch’s director of Integrated Information Services.

“We’ve been very diligent in our approach to implementing electronic filing in Colorado and have a solid plan for methodically rolling out each court until the entire state has e-file capabilities within the next six months. We have created a solution that benefits everyone, including the court, the Bar and the public with no additional cost to the taxpayer.”

The e-file service implemented by the state is JusticeLink from Courtlink, an online platform for accessing court record information and filing legal documents.

“The implementation of e-filing is a significant milestone in the state’s continuing efforts to bring technological advancements that benefit its citizens,” says Colorado Supreme Court Justice Alex Martinez. “This launch is a major step toward achieving a statewide system for filing electronically in all Colorado Courts, and it signals our increasing commitment to better serve the needs of Colorado citizens and their attorneys.”

Russel Murray, who was the first attorney to use the new e-filing system, says, “To say we were excited is an understatement ... It was like making the first-ever telephone call.”

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