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Dane, Washburn among 6 counties going paperless in April

In April, six Wisconsin counties will be joining 41 other counties in requiring electronic filing of certain court documents.

In those 41 counties, e-filing is required in civil, family, small claims, paternity, criminal, traffic and forfeiture cases. The statewide transition to e-filing had started with counties requiring electronic filing in four types of cases: civil, family, small claims and paternity cases.

Mandatory filing in criminal, contested traffic and forfeiture cases started March 1, so all counties that transition to mandatory e-filing will require electronic documents to be filed for those types of cases.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court gave the green light for mandatory e-filing in February last year. The goal is to require all case types to be filed electronically by the end of 2019.

Probate cases are the next in line to become mandatory. Electronic filing of those cases is being tested in Ashland, Ozaukee, Columbia and Pepin counties, said Jean Bousquet, chief information officer for the state courts.

Starting April 3, Dane and Washburn counties will be requiring parties to file documents electronically in those cases. Dane County will be the largest county to date to require e-filing.

Four other counties are scheduled to transition to mandatory e-filing that month. Sawyer, Taylor, Polk and Price counties will go paperless starting April 17.

In May, Iron, Menominee, Shawano, Langlade and Lincoln counties will require e-filing. Lafayette County is slated to go mandatory June 1.

“We continue to receive feedback and really good ideas from filers and court users,” Bousquet said. “Our focus is improving the software and making updates as much as possible.”

About Erika Strebel, [email protected]

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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