‘eCourts’ launches in multiple ENC counties

BEAUFORT COUNTY N.C. (WITN) – Court systems across North Carolina are switching from paper to digital with the help of eCourts.

Monday, the new system became available in 12 counties including Beaufort, Hyde, Tyrrell, and Washington.

“The new system allows people to be able to view their documents from the comfort of their own home,” Beaufort County Courthouse Assistant Clerk Paris Ireland said.

eCourts contains new software applications and technology improvements with the goals of providing 24/7 service to the public, reducing paper forms, and enhancing recovery from a disaster.

District Court Judge Jason Williams said Beaufort County Courthouse has been training for months, getting ready for the new system and he is glad it is finally here.

“Too long I think the court system has not kept up with technology,” Williams said. “Even though there will be hiccups with this initially, I think ultimately it will be better for the public.”

eCourts is broken up into different components including File and Serve, and Portal. File and Serve allows you to file and submit documents online, pay fees, and receive filing status updates. The portal allows the public to view case information as well as have access to court information such as names, citation numbers, and court dates.

Ireland believes the new system will not only help the public but the courts as well.

“There’s good and there’s bad. The bad is learning it and trying to get used to the new system,” Ireland said. “I think it’s going to be a good system when it’s implemented, and everyone is trained.”

Williams said that while it may take some time to fully grasp how it works, the end goal of helping the community is worth it.

“Court as you know it will move slower in the beginning, but eventually I am convinced that it will be a good system for everybody, that people will be able to access better, and it will better serve the public,” Williams said.