New E-filing system comes to Dorchester courts

Special to Dorchester Banner/Dave Ryan Members of the Dorchester County Bar Association gathered at Circuit Court in Cambridge on Sept. 23 to learn about the new Maryland Electronic Courts electronic filing system. In front from the left are Amanda Leonard, Christopher Robinson, Angela Huffman, Peter Paul, Judge Matthew A. Maciarello, Judge Raymond Beck, Judge Melvin J. Jews, Judge Brett W. Wilson, Magistrate Karen R. Ketterman, Dorchester Bar President Bridget Lowrie, Jodi Cavanaugh Jews, Morgan Crank, Laura L. Chafey and Jamie L. Dykes. In the middle row from the left are Amanda Forester-Cannon, T. Clay Groton, Wesley Moore, Nathan Christopher, Sarah Baugh, Teri Belcher, Walter B. Gunby, Marjolane Merryweather Wooten and E. Thomas Merryweather. In back from the left are Robert L. Marvel Jr., Purcell Luke, Raymond H. Simmons Jr., Maurice L. Nelson, Kenrick Roberts, Hubert M. Wright IV, Bill Jones, Michael P. Geleta, Michael LeMire and Michael Dodd. Not pictured at Judge John L. Norton III, Kisha Petticolas, Emory Tamplin Jr., David Scott Messersmith and Deborah Camber.

Special to Dorchester Banner/Dave Ryan
Members of the Dorchester County Bar Association gathered at Circuit Court in Cambridge on Sept. 23 to learn about the new Maryland Electronic Courts electronic filing system. In front from the left are Amanda Leonard, Christopher Robinson, Angela Huffman, Peter Paul, Judge Matthew A. Maciarello, Judge Raymond Beck, Judge Melvin J. Jews, Judge Brett W. Wilson, Magistrate Karen R. Ketterman, Dorchester Bar President Bridget Lowrie, Jodi Cavanaugh Jews, Morgan Crank, Laura L. Chafey and Jamie L. Dykes. In the middle row from the left are Amanda Forester-Cannon, T. Clay Groton, Wesley Moore, Nathan Christopher, Sarah Baugh, Teri Belcher, Walter B. Gunby, Marjolane Merryweather Wooten and E. Thomas Merryweather. In back from the left are Robert L. Marvel Jr., Purcell Luke, Raymond H. Simmons Jr., Maurice L. Nelson, Kenrick Roberts, Hubert M. Wright IV, Bill Jones, Michael P. Geleta, Michael LeMire and Michael Dodd. Not pictured at Judge John L. Norton III, Kisha Petticolas, Emory Tamplin Jr., David Scott Messersmith and Deborah Camber.


CAMBRIDGE — County lawyers gathered at Circuit Court on Sept. 23 to learn about a new filing system coming to the Lower Shore, designed to aide access for attorneys and the public.

Maryland Electronic Courts (MDEC) “provides an efficient and cost-effective way to receive filings while improving the management of records,” the state courts’ website said.

Dorchester goes live with MDEC on Dec. 12.

“Attorneys have been filing electronically, or ‘e-filing,’ since October 2014, when MDEC launched in Anne Arundel County,” the website said. “Now, mandatory e-filing also is in effect for attorneys filing in Caroline, Cecil, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties.”

The local attorneys were on hand Friday to attend a class conducted by MDEC eFiling Manager Tara Glover of the state’s judiciary, and Judicial Law Clerk Lauren Kitzmiller from the District Court of Maryland.

The class detailed how to file and serve, using Odyssey software, from just about any location. “It allows all of our users to gain access,” Ms. Glover said.

Kiosks will be set up in all clerks’ offices to give the general public the chance to use the system. However, while registered users must use MDEC, “It’s not mandatory for the public,” Ms. Glover said.

She added that when there is a paper version and an electronic version of records, the electronic one will be official.

“I think this will help streamline the process for attorneys,” President of the Dorchester County Bar Association Bridget Lowrie said. “We’re really excited to offer the training for attorneys and to continue to support them through the transition.”

Ms. Lowrie is also assistant professor of criminal justice and paralegal studies at Chesapeake College. “Paralegal got a grant from the Mid-Shore Community Foundation for iPods for class,” she said, noting that this should help keep students tech-savvy and ready for the new system.

For information on MDEC, visit www.courts.state.md.us/mdec/efiling.

Dave Ryan is editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at dryan@newszap.com.

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