RALEIGH — Courts in twelve northeastern North Carolina counties will make the move to digital case management on Feb. 5, 2024, according to the N.C. Administrative Office of the Courts.
The 12 counties in Track 3 of the eCourts transition comprise District Court Districts 1 and 2 – Beaufort, Chowan, Currituck, Camden, Dare, Gates, Hyde, Martin, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Tyrrell, and Washington counties. Currently, five counties are live on the eCourts system – Harnett, Johnston, Lee, Mecklenburg, and Wake counties.
The digital case management system will make court records searchable online and at no cost to the public. Attorneys and self-represented parties can also electronically file court documents.
“This transition of North Carolina’s court system is long overdue and empowers the public with free online records searches, remote electronic filings, and digital access to justice that aligns with our constitutional mandate that the courts ‘shall be open,’” said NCAOC Director Ryan Boyce in a statement.
The NCAOC estimates more than 1.8 million sheets of paper have been saved by eCourts since the platform’s pilot project began in February 2023. Roughly 30 million pieces of paper are added to court files each year in North Carolina, according to statistics provided by the agency.
The transition from paper court records to online files is also shifting data storage from old mainframes to the cloud, allowing NCAOC to retire outdated infrastructure and improve digital accessibility to the public, attorneys and courts employees.
Court official trainings and walkthroughs will begin next week for the Track 3 counties.
The NCAOC will offer virtual eFiling trainings for attorneys and members of the public in Track 3 beginning in December 2023, and in-person eFiling trainings for the public in early January 2024.
The eCourts project, one of the largest projects within North Carolina’s court system in history, seeks to provide an integrated, cloud-based suite of applications in all 100 counties by the end of 2025.