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More courts to test electronic filing system

AROUND MISSISSIPPI — Chancery Courts in DeSoto, Harrison, Holmes and Yazoo counties are expected to be next to test electronic filing of court documents.

The Mississippi Supreme Court in a May 26 order signed by Chief Justice Bill Waller Jr. authorized expansion of the Mississippi Electronic Courts (MEC) pilot project to the Chancery Courts of DeSoto, Harrison, Holmes and Yazoo counties. Madison, Scott and Warren counties were the original tests sites.

The pilot project so far has focused on civil case applications. The May 26 order also authorized MEC to develop and test the criminal component of the e-filing system. Testing of a criminal records e-filing model is expected to begin in the Circuit Courts of Madison and Warren counties.

The electronic filing system allows attorneys to file documents or read court records via the Internet 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Members of the public may view electronic documents via the Internet.

The Supreme Court in a separate order signed May 26 addressed public access to records via MEC. The court set a $10 annual registration and renewal fee. MEC will charge 20 cents per page to view electronic court records in participating jurisdictions. Fees are effective July 1.

Subscriber fees will be retained by MEC to help fund system operation. Page viewing fees will be split between clerks’ offices and MEC.

Public Access to Mississippi Electronic Courts (PAMEC) is similar to the federal court records subscriber-based access portal known as PACER. PAMEC at the end of May had 2,533 registered users, including 1,703 attorneys and 830 non-attorneys, according to MEC project director Calvin Ransfer.

Registration and other details are available at www.mssc.state.ms.us/mec/mec.html.

Source: Mississippi Supreme Court

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