There are things you need to know: the big picture and the actual e-filing process.
The big picture
On a statewide scale, here's the general picture of how Indiana's e-filing system is organized. First, there are a few terms you should know:
- Court case management system - computer software that courts use to keep track of case events, documents and parties.
- E-filing service provider - computer software (usually a website) that an attorney or litigant uses to start a case or respond to a case over the internet.
- E-filing manager - computer software that serves as the go-between, allowing an e-filing provider to connect to a court case management system.
The state provides a simple e-filing service provider to everyone, at no-cost, other than the court costs established by law and any credit card transaction fee. However, many attorneys and law firms may want to be able to choose an alternative e-filing service provider. The various e-filing service providers may have different costs & features, and some may integrate well with a firm's existing internal computer system. This approach makes it possible for them to use their provider of choice, as long as that provider is certified in Indiana.
With the potential for many choices of e-filing service providers for litigants, Indiana's model relies on software called an e-filing manager to connect them to any court case management system. Although the majority of Indiana's courts use the State's Odyssey case management system, the e-filing manager will integrate with the other case management systems.
Your e-filing process
Here's the basic experience you'll have when filing electronically.
Step 1: Choose a provider and register to e-file.
When you're ready to file a court document, choose from among several certified e-filing providers. The various providers have different features and pricing, and some may even have a free filing option. Indiana will provide a basic, free e-filing service in addition to the certified providers. When you have chosen your provider, you will need to agree to the provider's terms and conditions and register a valid email address where you agree to receive notices and documents concerning your court case.
Step 2: File a case
Your filing process may vary depending on the provider you choose.
Step 3: Stay Informed
You will be notified by email when certain events happen in your case, such as:
- Your document was filed
- Opposing party e-filed a document
- Court issued an order
As your case proceeds, you will have online access to documents e-filed by the other parties in your case or documents issued by the court.
You can return to any e-filing service provider if you need to file additional documents.