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Irish courts go paperless with new app

  September 12, 2016    Finances    T Wallace

The Irish courts have moved one step closer to paperless litigation with the use of the bespoke eCourt app. The eCourt app has been developed by barristers Dáithí Mac Cárthaigh and Kieran Morris. It allows files to be downloaded by all parties in advance of the hearing, and allows for the taking of private notes on the downloaded file.

Using the eCourt system, pleadings and other court documents are scanned and uploaded to Android tablets, where they can be searched electronically and private annotations made.

The technology is aimed at civil and commercial cases where a lot of paperwork is involved, and allows a person presenting in court to bring up a page on all party devices he or she is referring to.

When the presenter moves his/her page, the page reference is transmitted to remote server and this transmits the page reference back to all the receiving devices, which are also registered on the server.

The papers are never uploaded to the internet or cloud storage, and each device is encrypted for heightened security

To resolve the problem of having no Wi-Fi available in court, the developers have created “Court Box”, which is a local Wi-Fi access point with an in-built server as well, so it’s a mobile plug-and-play unit. This has been used previously in the Supreme Court, and has supported up to 30 devices.

Although the app is fully functional on Android devices, there are still some issues to be ironed out with people who have different devices.

The developers are hoping to franchise the service out to Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK. A preliminary demonstration of the technology has already been shown to Queen’s Counsel in Northern Ireland.

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