Why does life and practice of law in the REGJB need to be so difficult?
1) Why aren't court documents scanned so they can be accessed electronically?
Let's break this down in to two subsets. First, the Feds have a great system. You electronically file something and it is available for downloading from then on. This system was fully functional before the state instituted our filing system which does not make filed documents accessible.
Second, what's the document attorneys wait in line at the clerk's office (now down to one clerk and counting) to copy? An A-Form on a new case. Why aren't those scanned so we can get them?
We can order a four course meal from a French restaurant on our phone and pay for it and have it delivered to the courthouse within an hour, but we can't get a copy of an a-form without waiting in a line for the same hour.
You can apply for a freaking mortgage on your phone. But we can't an electronic copy of one damn pink piece of paper ("the defendant fraudulently applied for over 200 mortgages from his phone and was arrested after an investigation.")
2) Why aren't informations provided to the defense? It's only the charging document. The prosecution doesn't give you one when they file charges and all the in court clerk will do is give you some vague promise about mailing it to you sometime before 2027. But why incur the mailing cost? Why not have a copy available? Or scanned and emailed? We realize we're being picky here. It's only the charging document. The piece of paper that is bringing your client to court and may send her to prison for life. Other than that, it's not that important.
3) Why can't clerks in court certify a copy? Why do we have to get a copy of an order in court and then have to trek up to nine and wait in line for the clerk (down to one every other day and counting) to get it certified?
4) And if the in court clerk could certify a document, then a motion to transport a defendant could be certified in court and handed to a corrections officer. Instead, here is the procedure (edited for brevity) : i) Go to court; It's not on calendar. leave; ii) Re-set the motion; iii) Go back to court; iv) Get the order signed; v) Walk or ride the elevator up to nine; Go see the clerk (down to working twice a week and counting); vi) Get six certified copies; vii) Walk down to six. Go to corrections. Give them six certified copies. They want seven. vii) Go back to court. Court is finished for the day; viii) Call the JA and ask the case to be put back on calendar. JA asks for a written motion first. Email the motion. JA sets it on calendar in six weeks; ix) Go to court. Get motion signed. Judge comments she already signed this. "It's too long to explain judge. Just sign it again." x) Get order. Take elevator up to nine; xi) Wait in line for clerk. xii) Get sixteen certified copies; xiii) Take certified copies to corrections. "Why do you have sixteen certified copies? We only need three." ; xiv) Look for window to jump out of.
5) Why do we have to call over-worked JAs to calendar a case? We can schedule an appointment with a heart surgeon over an app on our phone. We can buy a car on-line, book a trip to Bali, make reservations at Per Se on our phone. We can short Apple and go long on Bank of America with three clicks on our phone. But we have to call a JA to schedule a two minute motion.
Why does the practice of law in the REGJB have to be this difficult?
There are Apps for everything these days. Uber is changing the world. In San Francisco most of the parking spaces downtown are being electronically monitored so an App can find a parking space for you. But in the REGJB if you want almost anything, you need to wait on line and ask for a paper file which the odds are 50-50 cannot be found, and then copy the item in the file. It boggles the mind how far behind the times we are.
Five questions about five simple issues for which the technology exists to do it better, cheaper, and easier.
15 questions left. Post yours in the comments and we will consider using them.
See you in court, where you must turn your beeper off before entering a courtroom.
UPDATE: Question # 6
6) WHY CAN'T WE GET DECENT WI-FI in the courthouse?
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