Justice Ecosystem White Paper: Benefits of a Modern Court Case Management System

Topics: Data Analytics, Efficiency, Government, Justice Ecosystem: Technology, Legal Innovation, State Courthouses

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A well-designed CMS will deliver core functionality that provides meaningful ancillary benefits to the courts, such as more efficient data entry, more effective data retrieval, better tools and enhanced bar and public access.

In this white paper — Benefits of a Modern Court Case Management System — author Richard Slowes, Former Commissioner of Minnesota Supreme Court, describes the state of Minnesota’s experience as an “early adopter” of computerized court case management.

As Slowes observes, there are a number of trends and issues affecting courts that create an impetus for greater use of available technology. As legal practice has become more technologically advanced, pressure mounts on the courts to join the flow of technological progress. One aspect of this impetus for technological growth is increased interest in implementation of e-filing and/or a more or less paperless court process, spurred in part by adoption of e-filing in the federal district courts.


A well-designed CMS will deliver core functionality that provides meaningful ancillary benefits to the courts, such as more efficient data entry, more effective data retrieval, better tools and enhanced bar and public access.


Excerpt:

Minnesota was an “early adopter” of computerized court case management, implementing its homegrown Trial Court Information System (TCIS) for the district courts in the early 1980s. An extension of TCIS for the appellate courts was added several years later. By 2000, although TCIS was still functioning, its technology had become outmoded, and the system was increasingly difficult to maintain. The Minnesota judicial branch was therefore pursuing acquisition of a replacement for TCIS—envisioned as a statewide court case management system that would also interface with other justice system partners, such as law enforcement and local prosecutors’ offices—to be known as MnCIS.

From the perspective of appellate users, the appellate version of TCIS always had functional limitations inherent in its origins as a district court case management system. To avoid a similar outcome with MnCIS, appellate court staff requested that the appellate courts be included in planning for the new system from the beginning, rather than having appellate court needs addressed after the system had been designed for the district courts.


Download the White Paper here:

Benefits of a Modern Court Case Management System