In an apparent effort to comply with law and Rule of Court by allowing multiple vendors, the court has now instituted direct e-filing for $10.80 per filing. That apparently accompanies a $2.50 handling fee through another Electronic Service Provider (EFSP), making it roughly double the going rate for e-filing through File & ServeXpress that charges $7. A long, thorough article about how the San Francisco Superior Court mandatory e-filing effort has rolled out is posted by Courthouse News Service here. There are links to memos, a Court of Appeal petition for a stay filed by One Legal, Inc., a competitor that wants to participate as an EFSP at $4.95 per filing.
The article also calculates that the combined e-filing at $7 and accompanying e-service at $8 per service will amount to about $3M.
Since the San Francisco local rule requires paper courtesy copies to be delivered to the department, the copy fees and deliveries at an additional $25 will amount to another $3.5M. It will be cheaper to e-file and e-serve than copying, assembling, and sending a process server or messenger to the court and mailing to opposing counsel.
Just an aside, I was at court today, the first day after the “grace period” before mandatory e-filing kicked in. I was standing in line for an hour, waiting to see one of two clerks at a window. I waited for several pro pers to go to the window for 5 – 15 minutes each – signing their forms, assembling them appropriately for filing, and asking the clerk questions and getting answers they still couldn’t comprehend. Another process server who also waited an hour, presented an Answer for filing because his client tried to file it electronically and the system rejected it. The clerk sent him away and would not file it.
Fasten your seat belts. This will be a bumpy ride.
San Francisco Superior Court Announces Direct E-filing Portal
San Francisco Superior Court will begin direct E-filing through its own portal. Here is the court’s E-filing page, and the announcement. E-filings made at or after 4:00 PM will be considered filed the following court day.
New Court Holiday in September 2015 Will Affect Service and Calendaring
AB 1973 amended Govt. Code sec. 6700 relating to holidays, and “as of January 1, 2015, the fourth Friday in September, known as “Native American Day,” will be added to the list of “holidays in this state.”
Julie Goren, Esq., publisher of the “Litigation by the Numbers”, the Essential California Litigation Handbook, has posted a review of this change here: Native American Day, and how it will affect calendaring issues in September.
Mandatory E-Filing Starts in San Francisco Superior Court on Dec. 8, 2014
Process servers, messengers, and litigants will no longer be able to file documents in San Francisco Superior Court beginning December 8, 2014. Your only option will be to e-file through File & ServeXpress.
Other Electronic Filing Service Providers will be coming in 2015.