E-Filing, new website now available from Circuit Clerk’s office
After getting the green light from the Illinois Supreme Court, Clinton County Circuit Clerk Rod Kloeckner said his office enacted the service last week. E-Filing allows the filing of civil court documents electronically over the Internet – rather than on paper – with filing fees paid electronically. Filing and payment procedures are automated with an e-Filing system, dramatically improving operational efficiency and improving service to the public and legal community.
“It’s convenient, saves time and reduces paperwork,” Kloeckner said. “We already scan every piece of which is headed for the case file. If the document is electronic from the very beginning, it saves that step. Law offices can also save labor, postage and overnight mailing costs when serving filings on opposing counsel.”
The new service, available through Judici.com for participating attorneys, effectively extends the court’s operating hours, even pushing filing deadlines to midnight on court business days. If other attorneys on the case have an e-mail address on file with the court, the e-filing service also fulfills the filing attorney’s obligation to serve copies of the filings upon the other parties on the case.
These new capabilities extend the court’s existing online services for the legal community, which offer attorneys quick access to all of their cases in nearly 70 Illinois counties participating in Judici.com, multi-court searches on potential clients or witnesses, as well as web calendar services which can overlay their court hearings onto other calendar tools.
While the federal court has required e-Filing for more the decade, the Supreme Court recently set a deadline of Jan. 1, 2018, requiring all circuit courts within the state to have their e-Filing program functional.
Clinton County is the 15th county in Illinois to have applied and been approved to conduct an electronic filing program. Attorneys or the public who are seeking more information of these services should visit the Clinton County Circuit Clerk’s website at www.clintoncountycircuitclerk.com.
In February, Kloeckner’s office enacted e-Guilty and e-Pay. These two “electronic” initiatives allows Clinton County to accept voluntary electronic pleas of guilty from offenders in minor traffic and conservation offenses, and lets defendants pay outstanding fines and fees on existing traffic and criminal cases online via Judici.com.
Clinton County is also one of 19 counties in the state – and the only one in the 4th Judicial Circuit – to be a pilot county in 2012 for e-Appeal, the electronic transfer of record on appeal of cases that go to the Appellate Court.
In addition to the new e-Business initiatives, Kloeckner recently unveiled a new and improved website with a bent on user friendliness. The new site can be accessed two ways: at www.clintoncountycircuitclerk.com or by going to the official Clinton County website at www.clintonco.illinois.gov, clicking on the “County Offices” tab and selecting “Circuit Clerk.”
New features on the mobile-friendly website include updated and expanded access to online case information via the office’s case-management system at Judici.com as well as easy-to-use buttons for e-Filing, e-Pay and e-Guilty. The redesigned site has easier access to court forms and packets, court costs and filing fee information, and helpful links for assist self-represented litigants.
Another new feature includes a helpful court calendar for potential jurors that highlights the weeks Clinton County has civil and criminal trials. Kloeckner said he will add other features to the website in the future, such as emergency juror information and administrative orders.
“We are proud of the new website and what it has to offer to the public,” said Kloeckner, who encourages any patrons to send feedback through the “Send a Message” link. “We are looking forward to hearing any and all feedback or suggestions for improvements.”