When the pandemic started two years ago, everyone, including the government, was taken by surprise. As a result, court proceedings were not adapted to handle the pandemic in a way that would be beneficial to either the litigants or the public. However, as the pandemic progressed, the government and the judiciary have made several advancements in technology that have allowed court proceedings to continue while also protecting the health and safety of everyone involved.
Some of the most notable technological advancements in court proceedings during the pandemic include:
- The use of video conferencing for hearings – In the past, if a litigant or witness was unable to attend a hearing in person, they would have to appear by telephone. This posed several problems, including the fact that the other participants could not see or hear the person on the phone. However, with the advent of video conferencing, litigants and witnesses can now participate in hearings from anywhere in the world, as long as they have access to a computer with a webcam. In Phoenix, video conference for court reporters is allowed to be able to transcribe the proceedings.
- The use of electronic filing – In the past, lawyers had to submit paper copies of all court documents to the appropriate court clerk. This process was slow and inefficient, and it often resulted in misplaced or lost documents. However, with the advent of electronic filing, lawyers can now submit all court documents electronically, which not only speeds up the process but also reduces the risk of misplaced or lost documents.
- The use of online case management systems – In the past, lawyers and court staff had to track cases by hand, which was often a time-consuming and error-prone process. However, with the advent of online case management systems, such as CourtLink, lawyers and court staff can now track cases electronically, which is much more efficient and accurate.
- The use of digital audio recordings – In the past, court proceedings were often recorded on tape, which was then transcribed by a court reporter. This process was time-consuming and often resulted in errors in the transcript. However, with the advent of digital audio recordings, court proceedings can now be recorded digitally, which is much quicker and more accurate.
- The use of social media – In the past, court proceedings were often conducted in private, with only the lawyers and witnesses being allowed to participate. However, with the advent of social media, such as Twitter and Facebook, court proceedings are now often conducted in public, which allows the public to follow along and participate in the proceedings.
These are just a few of the many technological advancements that have been made in court proceedings during the pandemic. With these advances, courts have been able to continue functioning effectively while also protecting the health and safety of everyone involved. In the next few years, it is likely that even more advances will be made, which will further improve the efficiency and accuracy of court proceedings.
What do you think about these advancements? Do you think they have been beneficial? Are there any other advancements that you would like to see made? Let us know in the comments!