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Setback for e-filing of records on appeal

A petition to allow the electronic transmission of records on appeal is now likely to take effect later than expected.

The proposed rule would not require trial courts to use electronic means to send records on appeal; the courts would instead be merely allowed to use e-filing if they chose.

The change to the rules would lead to efficiency and savings, the proposal’s supporters have said.

Under the proposed rules, documents in the record would still be submitted in paper copies but then would be scanned by trial-court clerks, who would then destroy the paper versions after 48 hours. Judges and attorneys would still have the option of printing out portions of the record.

Clerk of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals Diane Fremgen had originally petitioned for the new rule to take effect on Jan. 1, but the date will now be postponed because the petition was not approved by Nov. 1. Fremgen said Tuesday she is now hoping for a July 1 effective date.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court is scheduled to discuss the proposal during an additional open rules conference Nov. 16. The item is fifth on the agenda, although there is a possibility that the justices may not get to it.

Fremgen petitioned the court in June for the change. The court held a public hearing on the petition Oct. 13, and discussion of it was scheduled during the open rules conference held afterward. However, the conference was cancelled early that morning so that the newly appointed Justice Rebecca Bradley, who had been sworn in the day before, could become familiar with the petitions the justices are considering.

Gov. Scott Walker appointed Bradley on Oct. 9 to take a spot on the bench that was left vacant by the sudden death of Justice Patrick Crooks.


About Erika Strebel, erika.strebel@wislawjournal.com

Erika Strebel is the law beat reporter for the Wisconsin Law Journal and a law school student at UW-Madison. She can be reached at 414-225-1825.

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