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Michigan looks at e-filing, could benefit families in court

There is no question that family legal matters can be stressful. Divorce is no exception. The process may seem daunting and impossible to resolve but a Farmington Hills divorce lawyer can be an excellent resource to couples and parents. A lawyer can answer questions and put worries about finances or custody to rest.

Michigan is currently working to improve one area of the court system that may alleviate even more of the stressors with divorce and custody issues. The state wants to make it possible to file complaints and court related documents electronically. This means that some things could be filed from home or at work, eliminating additional trips to the courthouse.

The technology effort encompasses an e-filing initiative. The initiative hopes to establish a central electronic filing database that will be available to all Michigan courts. The new system would improve accessibility and make everything paperless.

Another benefit is money saved. Electronic filing and paperless systems save money and therefore save taxpayer dollars.

The initiative is starting with Michigan's Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals and will eventually trickle down to the state's trial courts.

In Macomb County, the circuit court is already implementing e-filing working toward a paperless system. The initial area of focus was on civil cases and divorce cases that didn't involve minor children.

Courts that already have some electronic and paperless systems in place report improvements in savings on postage and paper. It also save times since court clerks aren't bombarded with pulling filings and moving them manually from one court to another.

A single, central electronic system will also improve how information is shared between courts. The new system should take roughly five years to establish.

Source: The Times Herald, "Courts across Michigan look to go electronic, paper-free," Christina Hall, March 6, 2013

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