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High Court: All Circuits Must Use Statewide E-Filing System Beginning 2018

A recent court order (, which amends the court's January 22, 2016 mandatory e-filing order, requires circuits with existing e-filing programs to switch to the statewide eFileIL system by July 1, 2018. The original order had not set a specific date, but said that one would be announced in the future.

Another change wrought by the amendment is that all courts must make their case documents and information available to a new statewide remote access system known as re:SearchIL. However, this does not mean that attorneys and the public will have immediate access to the new system. The high court has stated that implementation and access will progress at a pace that it sets.

Initial access will only be provided to judges, clerks, and court officials. The amended order says that attorneys and the public will ultimately gain access -- re:SearchIL "is designed to serve as an online remote access system similar to Pacer in the federal courts."

Before that can happen, "a remote access policy needs to be fully vetted and approved by the supreme court," Madison County Chief Circuit Judge David Hylla says. The high court's e-Business Policy Advisory Board, of which Hylla is chair, is working to recommend a policy, he says. He expects that re:SearchIL will be "available to the bar and the public soon after all or nearly all courts are integrated with the central [Electronic Filing Manager.]"

There will be a predetermined document access fee (much like Pacer). The amended order says that the fee will be paid in full to the circuit court owning the case documents-so long as the court has migrated to eFileIL.

Find out more in the August Illinois Bar Journal.

Posted on August 1, 2017 by Mark S. Mathewson
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Member Comments (3)

Editor's note: the date by which circuits with existing e-filing programs are required to switch to the statewide eFileIL system is July 1, 2018, not January 1. This article was corrected to reflect that.

I have said this before, but there are far more important items for justice and an effective court system than electronic filing such as:

- Having state wide court form and procedures instead of the current hodgepodge county setup.

- Eliminating all local rules. If it is good enough for one court, make it effective state wide.

- Centralizing court records at least electronically.

- Eliminating court hearings for non adversarial matters (e.g., uncontested probate, name changes, etc.)

- Allowing non adversarial matters to be administered in any court in the state with as long as anyone affected by this has the right of objection.

- Basically having the same court system for all no matter where you are in Illinois.

Can you imagine what it would be like if the Illinois Department of Revenue operated like the Illinois courts? You would have a multitude of tax forms depending on what county you were in. The head of any office could write rules that affected only people in that county. If you had a tax dispute, you would need to go to your county.

Your ideas should be explored. Uniform forms and rules, reduced court appearances and more unified court system should be examined. Thanks for brining this up.